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UN atomic energy agency: Iran, Korea must cooperate

The head of the UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) [official website] on Monday stressed the need for both Iran and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) to cooperate in resolving outstanding issues regarding their nuclear activities. In his statement [text], the Director-General of the agency expressed concern about the safeguards currently in place in both countries, suggesting that the governments are not meeting their obligations. In response to recent claims of governments performing nuclear tests, he declared that, "Such actions are clear violations of relevant UN Security Council resolutions." Neither country has complied with UN standards for safeguards, or with the necessary verification activities, which must be conducted for the UN to have knowledge of the status of the countries' nuclear programs. He expressed a commitment to working with the governments towards achieving acceptable safeguards.

The UN has addressed this issue [UN backgrounder] with both countries before. The use of atomic energy in these countries, as well as the International response to it has sparked much debate [JURIST op-ed]. Last week the EU General Court annulled sanctions [JURIST report] imposed upon eight Iranian banks and companies, finding them unjustified. The 28-nation group has frozen assets and banned travel since 2010 for Iranian citizens thought to be linked to the nation's nuclear development.

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