IAEA Safeguards Reporting Process
28 August 2009 |
In light of recent reports that suggested the IAEA was withholding information on Iran´s nuclear activities, the IAEA provides the following information regarding the preparation of reports by the IAEA Director General on the Implementation of the NPT Safeguards Agreement in the Islamic Republic of Iran:
- All the information provided by third parties that (a) has been vetted and corroborated by the Agency in accordance with its practices, and (b) which has been authorized by the providers of such information to share with Iran, has been described to the Board of Governors in the reports of the Director General.
- As a matter of course, the Agency receives information from a variety of sources that may have relevance to the implementation of safeguards. Any such information is shared by the Agency with the country concerned, and as appropriate, with the Board of Governors only after it has been vetted in accordance with the Agency´s practices. There is currently no other information on Iran available to the Agency which has completed this process.
- The Secretariat´s safeguards conclusions for a State are reached through the implementation of the State´s Safeguards Agreement and (if the State has one in force) Additional Protocol. In addition, as part of the process, the Secretariat also analyses information it receives/acquires from a variety of sources. The Agency has limited means to determine the veracity of such information independently. Nevertheless, such information is critically assessed, in accordance with the Agency´s practices, by corroborating it, inter alia, with information available to the Agency from other sources and from its own findings. To the extent possible, the Agency shares such information with the State concerned with a view to obtaining clarification. This process is strictly based on the rights and obligations of the Secretariat enshrined in the safeguards agreement (and Additional Protocol) with the State, and in certain cases in pursuance of a pertinent request of the Security Council. Details on the Agency´s inspection and verification methods are to be found on its Web Site.
- It goes without saying that not all technical details can be presented in the reports. Instead, the reports provide a comprehensive and cohesive picture of the implementation of safeguards in the country concerned, enabling the Board of Governors to consider the Secretariat´s conclusions and agree on follow-up action as appropriate. The Board´s work is further facilitated through technical briefings restricted to Member States only, where the Secretariat provides amplifications of the technical details contained in the reports and responds to questions.
- The Secretariat´s reports are the product of an integrated team of experts and agreed to by all relevant members of the Secretariat and, of course, the Director General. Drafting any such report is an iterative process and, as with all its reports, the Secretariat goes through several different drafts with a view to assuring technical quality. This is to ensure that, at the end of a thorough discussion and assessment among all staff involved in the process, the Board of Governors will be presented with a product that is transparent, objective, balanced and factually correct.