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Aea: Detection Of Clandestine Nuclear Activities

Volume 571: debated on Monday 29 April 1996

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asked Her Majesty's Government:What initiatives the Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs was referring to when he recently said that "we are currently supporting a number of initiatives intended to strengthen the international nuclear non-proliferation regime". (House of Commons,

Hansard, col. 280), including the International Atomic Energy Authority's "ability to detect clandestine nuclear activities", and whether "clandestine nuclear activities" cover those allegedly being carried out in Israel.

The measures envisaged to strengthen the International Atomic Energy Agency's capability to detect undeclared nuclear activities emphasise greater agency access to and analysis of information on states' nuclear-related activities. Advanced technical measures, including the use of environmental sampling techniques and unattended monitoring equipment, are also to be used.

The full range of these proposals is still under consideration in the board of governors. It is not yet decided to what extent they will apply in states such as Israel which do not have full-scope safeguards agreements with the agency.