Russian agency files $178 mln claim against Norilsk

MOSCOW Wed Feb 27, 2008 7:37am EST

MOSCOW Feb 27 (Reuters) - Russia's environment agency said on Wednesday it had filed a 4.35 billion rouble ($177.9 million) claim against mining firm Norilsk Nickel (GMKN.MM) for alleged pollution of rivers in Siberia. Rosprirodnadzor said in a statement it had lodged the claim with the Krasnoyarsk regional arbitration court following an investigation of Norilsk's Taimyr division in summer 2007.

"I hope the court will make a balanced decision based on detailed studies of the material with which they are presented," Rosprirodnadzor's deputy head, Oleg Mitvol, said in the statement. (Reporting by Robin Paxton, editing by Dmitry Zhdannikov)

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