South Carolina governor urges U.S. to divert plutonium from Japan

South Carolina governor Nikki Haley speaks at the 2016 Kemp Forum on Expanding Opportunity in ColumbiaBy Aaron Sheldrick and Megan Cassella TOKYO/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley has written to U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz demanding a shipment of weapons-grade plutonium en route to her state from Japan be turned back or sent elsewhere, according to a copy of the letter seen by Reuters. The demand has the potential to embarrass the Obama administration a week before it hosts an important summit on nuclear non-proliferation and undermine what so far has been viewed as a success in keeping weapons-grade material safe. The ship loaded with weapons-grade plutonium left Japan for a Department of Energy site in South Carolina on Tuesday in what is the largest such shipment of the highly dangerous material since 1992, the environmental group Greenpeace said.

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