iaea-passes-critical-resolution-against-iran-summary

Context: Recently, the board of governors at the UN’s nuclear watchdog passed a resolution critical of Iran. 

More on the news:

  • The resolution was initially put forward by European states.
  • It was carried by 25 votes in favor versus two against, with seven abstentions. 
    • Russia and China, both of which had spoken out against the prospect of a resolution earlier, decided to vote against.

About the resolution passed

  • This resolution is the first of its kind since 2012, as tension mounts over Iran’s nuclear program.
  • It urges Iran to provide inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) with access to two sites in Iran to clarify whether undeclared nuclear activity took place there in the early 2000s.
    • Even though the sites in question are not thought to be directly relevant to Tehran’s current nuclear program, the IAEA says it needs to know if activities going back almost two decades have been properly declared.
  • The resolution also“calls on Tehran to fully cooperate with the IAEA and satisfy the Agency’s requests without any further delay, including by providing prompt access to the locations specified by the Agency.

The International Atomic Energy Agency(IAEA)

  • The International Atomic Energy Agency is the world's central intergovernmental forum for scientific and technical co-operation in the nuclear field. 
  • It works for the safe, secure, and peaceful uses of nuclear science and technology, contributing to international peace and security and the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals.
  • The IAEA is an autonomous international organization within the United Nations system.
  • IAEA’s headquarters is in Vienna, Austria.

Functions

  • The main functions of the IAEA are to: 
    • encourage and assist research, development and practical application of atomic energy for peaceful uses throughout the world; 
    • establish and administer safeguards designed to ensure that such activity assisted by the Agency is not used to further any military purpose; 
    • apply safeguards to relevant activities at the request of Member States; 
    • apply, under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and other international treaties, mandatory comprehensive safeguards in non-nuclear weapon States (NNWS) Parties to such treaties.
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