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G8 Declaration (Nuclear Non-Proliferation)

Volume 408: debated on Tuesday 1 July 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on North Korea's breach of its nuclear safeguards agreement, as mentioned in paragraph 7 of the Evian G8 Declaration on Non Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction, of 3 June. [120799]

Under the terms of its safeguards agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), North Korea is obliged to allow access by IAEA inspectors to its nuclear facilities.In October 2002 North Korea announced that it would restart nuclear activities at its Yongbyon reactor, which had been stopped under the terms of the 1994 Agreed Framework. Subsequent to this announcement North Korea expelled IAEA inspectors who had been in the country to monitor North Korea's compliance with its international obligations and to verify its declarations on past nuclear activity. By restarting activity at Yongbyon without IAEA monitors being present, North Korea is in clear breach of its obligations under the IAEA safeguards agreement and the Agreed Framework.