The International Atomic Energy Agency's latest report confirms fears that Iran is working on the research and development of nuclear weapons, but does not provide a clear sense of the success or timing of Iran’s attempts.
The International Atomic Energy Agency says Iran has worked on developing nuclear weapon designs and on testing components. It comes amid rumors that Israel is preparing to attack Iran's nuclear facilities.
The International Atomic Energy Agency report on Iran stops short of saying Tehran masterminded a secret program to possess atomic arms and it made the outlook for a negotiated solution to the Iran crisis less likely.
While it remains unclear whether Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is sincere in his proposal to cease production of highly enriched nuclear fuel and import it instead, it is clearly in the West’s best interests to accept the offer.
During a visit to Russia, North Korean leader Kim Jong-il said he would be ready to discuss Pyongyang's nuclear production if international six-party talks, which ended in 2008, resume.
The realization that both the United States and the Soviet Union shared an interest in preventing the proliferation of nuclear weapons led to a 1968 agreement that existing nuclear weapons states would work toward nuclear zero if other states agreed not to develop nuclear weapons.
While the International Atomic Energy Agency has passed a resolution that refers Syria to the UN Security Council for constructing a covert nuclear reactor, there are a number of significant problems with the resolution that could affect the UN’s ability to take action.
Israel destroyed a building in the Syrian desert nearly four years ago that both the United States and Israel argue was a covert nuclear reactor designed to produce plutonium. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) last month shared this assessment, countering assertions by Syria.
It remains to be seen whether a progressive international nuclear order can be built when states differ over which rules should be strengthened and how they should be enforced, and when some rulers reject the norms that others respect.
The 2011 conference focused on new actors and new agendas, reflecting the need to develop cooperative responses to challenges being posed by changing technology, distributions of political power, interest in nuclear energy, and security conditions in key regions.