Statement by the Presidency of the European Union to the IAEA Board of Governors

September 13, 2004

Agenda item 8(d): Implementation of the NPT Safeguards agreement in the Islamic Republic of Iran

Mr. Chairman,

I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union. The Candidate Countries Bulgaria, Romania, Turkey and Croatia, as well as the Countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro, and the EFTA countries Iceland and Norway, members of the European Economic Area, align themselves with this statement.

The EU welcomes the adoption by the Board of a resolution [by consensus]. The EU has carefully studied the Agency's report GOV/2004/60, as well as the five reports that preceded it regarding the implementation of the NPT Safeguards Agreement in the Islamic Republic of Iran. We wish to commend the Director General and the Secretariat for this latest, thorough report and we have taken note of his remarks on this matter in his introductory statement to this meeting of the Board.

The EU welcomes the fact that the IAEA seems to have an increasingly comprehensive understanding of the nature and extent of Iran's nuclear programme, although it is a matter of serious concern that a number of issues, after two years, still await clarification. We appreciate that Iran has continued to act as though its Additional Protocol were in force and that it has shown the kind of co-operation with the IAEA that enabled the Agency to continue its verification activities in most areas. We urge Iran to secure an early ratification of the Additional Protocol.

However, the EU is dismayed that Iran in June of this year reversed some of its earlier decisions regarding the voluntary suspension of its uranium enrichment related activities, which we consider to be the key ingredient for confidence building. In this context the EU reiterates that it considers the production of feed material to be an enrichment related activity. It must be restated that in the view of the EU confidence building is a process into which all parties should enter and invest with good will and a clear view of a positive outcome in the future that is beneficial to all. This entails the suspension of all enrichment and reprocessing related activities. That process can not be interrupted again in any manner if Iran sincerely wishes to enter a new mode of co-operation with the European Union.

In this context the EU also would like to underline that is not only the clear responsibility of Iran, but also of certain other states to provide all necessary co-operation with the IAEA promptly and fully, in order to enable the Agency to clarify the remaining outstanding issues.

The EU reiterates its call on Iran and other concerned states for full, proactive and transparent co-operation over the coming months so that a complete, comprehensive and definite picture can be presented at the November meeting of the Board of Governors of all aspects of Iran's nuclear programme as well as the implications of that picture for the assessment of Iran's implementation of its Safeguards Agreement.

The EU takes this opportunity to express once again its appreciation to the Director General and his staff for their professional and impartial work and to assure them of the EU's continuing support in their work.

Thank you Mr. Chairman.