UN Security Council calls on Iran to suspend enrichment-related activities

Amb. César Mayoral

29 March 2006 – Expressing serious concern that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is unable to conclude that there are no undeclared nuclear materials or activities in Iran, the United Nations Security Council today called upon that country to re-establish full and sustained suspension of all enrichment-related and reprocessing activities, including research and development, in a manner that is verified by the Agency.

“The Security Council expresses the conviction that such suspension and full and verified Iranian compliance would contribute to a diplomatic, negotiated solution that guarantees Iran’s nuclear programme is for exclusively peaceful purposes,” the Council said through a statement read out by its March President César Mayoral of Argentina.

The statement underlined “the willingness of the international community to work positively for such a solution, which will also benefit nuclear non-proliferation elsewhere.”

To monitor Iranian compliance with its requirements, the Council requested a report from the IAEA in 30 days.

“I think after 20 days working on this presidential statement, the Security Council had a good result,” Council President Mayoral told the press after issuing the statement. “I think its one step toward non-proliferation and in the future the Security Council and the IAEA will continue to deal with this subject.”

The Council has been meeting formally on the subject since 17 March, when it took up a report referred to it by the IAEA that voiced concern that “uncertainties related to the scope and nature of Iran’s nuclear programme have not been clarified after three years of intensive Agency verification.”

The report notes that under normal circumstances, drawing any conclusion about a country’s nuclear activities would take time, and the duration would be even longer in the case of Iran because of a number of factors, including the “undeclared nature” of Iran’s past programme.

In 2003, it was discovered that Iran had carried out secret nuclear activities for 18 years in breach of its obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Before transmitting the report to the Council, Agency chief Mohamed ElBaradei said the 15-member body “will lend its weight to the IAEA’s efforts so as to make sure Iran will work as closely as possible with us.”

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