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IAEA Director General Welcomes Russian-U.S. Commitments to Reduce Nuclear Arsenals and Strengthen Non-Proliferation

2 April 2009 | IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei welcomes and is greatly encouraged by the Joint Statement of President Medvedev and President Obama, in which they committed themselves through concrete steps to fulfill their obligations under the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, to achieve a nuclear-weapon-free world. The Director General believes that the commitment of the two Presidents to pursue new and verifiable reductions of their strategic offensive arsenals; the achievement of the long awaited entry into force of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty; the negotiation of a verifiable Treaty to end the production of fissile materials for nuclear weapons and the strengthening of efforts to secure nuclear weapons and material demonstrates leadership and finally moves us beyond the Cold War mentality. The Director General believes that these measures would also contribute to the strengthening of the non-proliferation regime by creating a much needed momentum for the universal adherence to comprehensive safeguards agreements and additional protocols and the enhancement of the safeguards system. The Director General welcomes the commitment of the two Presidents to promote the safe and peaceful use of nuclear energy for all countries and their support in that regard for the IAEA´s efforts to pursue multilateral approaches to the nuclear fuel cycle. The Director General shares the views of the two Presidents on the urgent need for a verifiable denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. He also supports their commitment to pursue a direct and comprehensive diplomatic solution with Iran that would address the international community´s concerns while guaranteeing Iran´s right to a peaceful nuclear programme.