IAEA director-general calls on Iran, North Korea to cooperate with U.N. agency

Yukiya Amano, the director-general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, said on Monday that North Korea and Iran must cooperate in resolving outstanding issues related to their nuclear activities.

Amano made the remarks during his introductory statement to the IAEA's general conference in Vienna. The conference brought together representatives from the agency's 155 Member States.

"The DPRK's statements concerning a third nuclear test and its intention to restart its nuclear facilities at Yongbyon, together with its previous statements about uranium enrichment activities and the construction of a light water reactor, are deeply regrettable," Amano said. "Such actions are clear violations of relevant U.N. Security Council resolutions."

Amano said the IAEA has not been able to carry out verification activities in North Korea since 2009.

The director-general also addressed the issue of Iran, which is not giving the IAEA the needed cooperation to assure the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities. While Iran's officials continue to state that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes, other countries contend the program is driven by military ambitions.

"It remains essential and urgent for Iran to engage with us on the substance of our concerns," Amano said. "I continue to urge Iran to fully implement its Safeguards Agreement and its other obligations and to engage with the agency to achieve concrete results on all outstanding substantive issues."

Amano said the IAEA, the U.N.'s atomic energy agency, is committed to working with the two countries on nuclear verification activities.