IAEA Board of Governors Meeting
Statement by Ms Alison Drury, Alternate Resident Representative of Australia to the IAEA
Agenda Item 4(c) (DPRK): Application of safeguards in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
21 November 2019
The DPRK’s ongoing development of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles, including its proliferation of sensitive technologies, presents an unacceptable challenge to international nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament arrangements – established under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and other instruments.
It also runs contrary to the will of the international community as expressed through numerous UN Security Council resolutions.
We once again commend the commitment demonstrated by all relevant parties, particularly the United States and the Republic of Korea, to continue talks with the DPRK, with the view to peaceful resolution of international concerns about the DPRK’s nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs.
Australia joins many other nations in seeking permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula, including through the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation of the DPRK.
That is why Australia has condemned the DPRK’s repeated ballistic missile launches since May, which are a clear violation of UN Security Council resolutions.
Australia once more calls on the DPRK to choose the path of dialogue and cease provocative actions that undermine prospects for peace and stability.
Australia is working with its partners to maintain sanctions and other measures until the DPRK takes clear steps towards complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation. We urge all countries to assist in maintaining sanctions and clamping down on sanctions evasion.
Fully implementing all relevant UN Security Council sanctions will help to encourage the DPRK to continue talks with the United States and the Republic of Korea.
We remain committed to doing all we can to foster successful outcomes from such talks.
Australia commends the Agency for its work to develop, and maintain, a high level of readiness to return to the DPRK.
The IAEA would – of course – have a crucial role to play in verifying any steps that the DPRK agrees to undertake regarding denuclearisation.
Australia once again urges the DPRK to:
- return to full compliance with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty
- permit IAEA safeguards inspections at an early date
- abandon its nuclear development activities in a complete, verifiable, and irreversible manner; and
- comply fully with all UN Security Council resolutions regarding its ballistic missile programs and activities.
Moreover – and in our capacity as a Co-Chair of the Friends of the CTBT – Australia also calls upon the DPRK to sign and ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty as soon as possible.
This would be one means for the DPRK to clearly demonstrate its good faith and preparedness to negotiate some form of comprehensive denuclearisation.
Australia stands ready to provide support to the efforts of the IAEA in its endeavours, including with verification.