29 Mar 2011

UN calls for summit on nuclear safety

10:33 am on 29 March 2011

The United Nations' atomic energy chief has called a summit in Austria to tackle mounting global concerns about nuclear safety.

Japan is struggling to avert a severe meltdown at its Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant and officials say highly radioactive water has been leaking from the badly damaged site following an earthquake and tsunami on 11 March.

Yukiya Amano says the international community needs a coordinated response in the wake of the crisis in Japan.

The disaster has prompted a rethink of nuclear power around the world, just as the technology was starting to regain momentum as a tool to fight global warming, Reuters reports.

Mr Amano says the International Atomic Energy Agency, which promotes peaceful uses of nuclear energy, will host the meeting in Vienna possibly in June.