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Egypt to Build Nuclear Energy Plant

Egypt says it will build a nuclear power plant to meet its growing energy needs.

The country's energy minister Hassan Younes told the state-owned newspaper Al-Ahram that Egypt plans to build a 1000 Megawatt nuclear power plant on the Mediterranean coast. He said the project will cost $1.5 billion and that the government will seek foreign investment.

The announcement comes three days after President Hosni Mubarak said Egypt should create a nuclear program for peaceful uses.

Egypt abandoned plans for nuclear energy in 1986 after the accident at the Soviet nuclear plant in Chernobyl.

Cairo has been largely silent on the dispute between Iran and major powers over Tehran's nuclear enrichment activities. The U.S. believes Iran is trying to build a nuclear weapon.

Egypt has long called for a Middle East free of nuclear weapons.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.