Tehran urges IAEA to remain impartial, independent in post-Amano era

July 23, 2019 - 19:27

TEHRAN – Iran has called on the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to maintain impartiality and independence after the death of its chief Yukiya Amano.

“His (Amano’s) key role in enhancing the objectives of the IAEA and preservation of the JCPOA will never fade away in the history of the Agency,” Iranian Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the International Organizations in Vienna Kazem Gharib Abadi wrote on the official Twitter account of Iran’s diplomatic mission in Vienna.

“I would like to express my sincere condolences and sympathy to his family, friends, and the staff of the IAEA as well as to the people and Government of Japan, and hope that the Agency will continue to be professional, impartial, and Independent in his absence,” he added.

The IAEA in a statement on its official website announced Amano’s death on Monday.

“The Secretariat of the International Atomic Energy Agency regrets to inform with deepest sadness of the passing away of Director General Yukiya Amano,” the IAEA secretariat said in the note, but did not state how Amano, who was 72, died.

The IAEA has published the latest reflections of the deceased chief as he expressed wish last week to step down in the following year.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Seyyed Abbas Araqchi in a message hailed the performance of the IAEA’s late director general.

“My deep condolences for #Amano demise. We worked very closely. I commend his skillful & professional performance as DG of IAEA resulted in complete closure of so-called #PMD & 15 consecutive reports confirming Iran’s full compliance to the #JCPOA. May the Almighty bless his soul,” Araqchi wrote on his Twitter account.

“During the past decade, the Agency delivered concrete results to achieve the objective of ‘Atoms for Peace and Development’, thanks to the support of Member States and the dedication of Agency staff. I am very proud of our achievements, and grateful to Member States and Agency staff,” Araqchi noted.

The IAEA’s responsibilities include policing the restrictions on Tehran’s nuclear activities under Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers, which the United States quit last year. For several times, Amano had confirmed Iran’s compliance with its nuclear-related commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Days ago, sources claimed that Amano, a longtime Japanese diplomat who was reappointed in 2017 to a third four-year term in charge of the IAEA, would step down in March of next year because of an unspecified illness that had visibly weakened him over the past year.

Amano worked at the Japanese Foreign Ministry from 1972 to 2005, when he joined the IAEA as Japan’s Resident Representative to the Agency. He had extensive experience in disarmament and non-proliferation diplomacy, as well as nuclear energy issues.

The IAEA flag was lowered half-mast on Tuesday in respect for Amana.

SP/PA

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