Pakistan becomes new chair of UN's IAEA

Pakistan became the new chair of the U.N. nuclear watchdog's governing body.

Pakistan becomes new chair of UN's IAEA

 

Pakistan became the new chair of the U.N. nuclear watchdog's governing body on Monday.

Pakistan is a longstanding member of the Vienna-based IAEA.

The one-year board chair position rotates between regions, who put forward their own nominee, and entails chairing debates of the IAEA's 35-nation decision-making body and helping them reach consensus decisions.

It does not give Pakistan individual powers to decide U.N. nuclear policy. Malaysia currently chairs the board.

Like Israel, North Korea and India, Pakistan has also shunned the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) that is at the heart of the International Atomic Energy Agency's work.

IAEA rejected last week an Arab-proposed resolution calling on "nuclear-armed" Israel to join a global anti-atomic arms treaty.

But a high-level U.N. meeting called on Friday for talks to start immediately on a treaty to ban production of fissile material used as fuel for atom arms.

Pakistan has insisted it will continue to block such talks, arguing that a ban would put it at a permanent disadvantage to India. The dispute has led to deadlock at the 65-nation Conference on Disarmament in Geneva.

According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, Pakistan has about 60 warheads while regional nuclear rival India has 60-70. Both nations conducted nuclear tests in 1998.
 

Reuters

Last Mod: 27 Eylül 2010, 14:18
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