December 3rd, 2007 02:24 EST
IAEA and Peaceful Nuclear Development in Latin America
Nuclear security and development are the focus of IAEA Director General Dr. Mohamed ElBaradei´s official visit to several Latin American countries this month.
Dr. ElBaradei is emphasizing links between security and social and economic development, and the IAEA´s role to help assure that nuclear energy is used in peaceful ways. The Director General is visiting Chile, Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay.
In Chile, Dr. ElBaradei spoke of the need for increased cooperation in view of Chile´s aspirations to develop nuclear power, as reported in the Santiago Times newspaper. "We talked today with the Mining Minister about how we can increase our cooperation in many areas, including looking into the possibility of having nuclear energy to satisfy part of Chile´s energy needs," he said.
In Chile, Dr. ElBaradei received the Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of Chile for his contribution to peace and international security from the country´s Foreign Minister, Mr. Alejandro Foxley.
In Argentina, Dr. ElBaradei is due to meet with the authorities from the country´s National Atomic Energy Commission, Nuclear Regulatory Authority, and industry leaders to discuss Argentina´s nuclear programme. Visits to the Centro de Diagnóstico Nuclear in Buenos Aires and the Balseiro Institute in Bariloche are also scheduled.
In Argentina, Dr. ElBaradei is being awarded two Doctor Honoris Causa degrees: one from the University of Buenos Aires, and one from Bariloche´s University of Cuyo/Balseiro Institute.
In Uruguay, Dr. ElBaradei is due to meet with the country´s highest government officials. He is also being honoured there, as a "distinguished citizen" of Montevideo.
In Brazil, Dr. ElBaradei is due to meet with authorities from the Brazilian Nuclear Energy Commission in Rio de Janeiro and visit the Brazilian-Argentine Agency for Accounting and Control of Nuclear Materials (ABACC) in Brasilia. ABACC works with the IAEA to safeguard nuclear materials and activities in the two countries.
Dr. ElBaradei is expected to give a speech at the Brazilian Diplomatic Academy "Rio Branco", and make a presentation at the Centro Brasileiro de Relacôes Internacionais. Both institutes are located in Brasilia.