IAEA 61st General Conference opens in Vienna, DPRK's nuclar program top concern

Added On September 19, 2017

VIENNA, Sept. 18 (Xinhua) -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) should fully comply with its obligations under all relevant resolutions of the United Nations Security Council and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the head of IAEA said on Monday.

"The nuclear test by the DPRK on Sept.3, its sixth and largest to date, is extremely regrettable," Director-General Yukiya Amano said at the opening of the 61st IAEA General Conference in Vienna, stressing that the agency will strive to return to the DPRK when political developments make it possible.

Amano's appointment to a further four-year term starting Dec. 1 was approved by the General Conference on Monday.

He also said maintaining high-quality programs and delivering concrete results for member states are key to IAEA's contribution to international development, peace and security.

A wide range of topics from growing international cooperation in nuclear, radiation, transport and waste safety, to strengthening the IAEA's activities related to nuclear science, technology and applications, as well as key elements concerning the peaceful use of nuclear technologies, are set to be discussed at the week-long annual conference.

"The agency will continue to deliver high-quality programs and respond promptly to member state needs," said Amano, who has been in office since 2009, reiterating that the agency will continue to contribute to international peace and security, as well as the lives of millions of people.

The modernization of the IAEA nuclear applications laboratories near Vienna was making excellent progress and the new Insect Pest Control Laboratory would be inaugurated in a week's time, he said.

"When completed in a few years' time, the expanded laboratory complex will greatly increase our capabilities as a technology holder, to the benefit of all 168 IAEA member states," he added.

"Iran is now subject to the world's most robust nuclear verification regime," he said, adding that the nuclear-related commitments undertaken by Iran under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) are being implemented.

Amano reminded delegates of the importance of safety and security in all uses of nuclear technology either for power or non-power purposes.

The IAEA plays a central role in ensuring effective international cooperation, he said.