IAEA Board of Governors Meeting
Statement by H. E. Mr Richard Sadleir, Resident Representative of Australia to the IAEA
Agenda Item 5a: Application of safeguards in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
8 March 2022
Australia remains deeply concerned by the ongoing actions of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in support of its illicit nuclear weapons program.
The DPRK’s nuclear weapons program is unacceptable and entirely incompatible with the nuclear non-proliferation framework as established under the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.
Chair, we share the Director-General’s concern regarding continuing activities consistent with the operation of the 5MW(e) reactor at Yongbyon, and ongoing indications of activities at two other sites, the Kangson complex and the Pyongsan Mine and Concentration Plant.
Australia further condemns the continuing pattern of provocative and destabilising ballistic missile launches conducted by the DPRK in flagrant contravention of multiple UN Security Council resolutions.
We reaffirm our call on the DPRK to comply fully with UN Security Council resolutions requiring it to abandon its nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction programs, and its ballistic missile programs.
Australia remains committed to strictly enforcing sanctions until the DPRK takes clear steps towards complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation. It is imperative that all countries implement UN Security Council sanctions against the DPRK.
The DPRK’s illegal actions are a grave threat to international peace and security and are contrary to global and regional interests in a stable, secure and rules-based Indo-Pacific.
We call on the DPRK to cease provocations and make a sustained commitment to diplomacy. Permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula can only be achieved through dialogue.
The IAEA will have a crucial verification role to play in the event the DPRK agrees to concrete actions towards denuclearisation. Australia commends the Agency for maintaining and enhancing its readiness to return to the DPRK.
It is incumbent on this body and the international community more broadly to continue to call out the DPRK’s illegal actions. These actions endanger us all. They put pressure on the international non-proliferation regime that is the cornerstone of international peace and security.
We reiterate our calls upon the DPRK to return to compliance with the NPT, to sign and ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test Ban Treaty and to fully comply with its obligations under Security Council resolutions.