Libya: General says 2.5 tonnes of missing uranium found near storage base

Source: The Guardian [UK]

“More than 2 tonnes of natural uranium reported missing by the UN’s nuclear watchdog in war-torn Libya have been found, a general in the country’s east has said. Gen Khaled al-Mahjoub, the commander of eastern warlord Khalifa Haftar’s communications division, said the containers of uranium had been recovered barely 5km (3 miles) from where they had been stored in southern Libya, and after the International Atomic Energy Agency reported their disappearance earlier on Thursday. … Natural uranium cannot immediately be used for energy production or bomb fuel, as the enrichment process typically requires the metal to be converted into a gas, then later spun in centrifuges to reach the levels needed. However, each tonne of natural uranium, if obtained by a group with the technological means and resources, can be refined to 5.6kg (12lbs) of weapons-grade material over time, experts say. That made finding the missing metal important for nonproliferation experts.” (03/16/23)