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|Tuesday, September 19, 2000, updated at 10:45(GMT+8)|
China Urges Respect of Rights of Nations to Peaceful Use of Nuclear EnergyA senior Chinese nuclear energy official, in an address to a meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) here Monday, urged the respect of justifiable rights of IAEA member states to the peaceful use of nuclear energy.
Zhang Huazhu, head of the Chinese delegation to the 44th session of the IAEA General Conference, said that China opposes hampering justifiable rights of member states of the IAEA to peaceful application of nuclear energy under the pretext of non-proliferation.
He said that nuclear non-proliferation and peaceful application of nuclear energy are two well-balanced functions of the IAEA, and that the IAEA should not over-emphasize one aspect while neglecting the other.
Zhang, who is the Director of State Agency of Atomic Energy of China, said that nuclear energy is clean, safe and economical.
Nuclear power accounts for one sixth of the world's power generation at present. In the long run, nuclear energy should play an important role.
According to Zhang, the Chinese delegation believes the IAEA should utilize its advantages to scientifically assess and objectively popularize the function of nuclear energy in the world's sustainable development.
Zhang pointed out that the IAEA should organize information exchange and answer difficult questions about technology to settle the public's common concerns on nuclear safety and disposal of radio-active waste.
Coordinating the research and development work of the member states, improving training and helping developing countries establish and improve nuclear infrastructure should be the IAEA's missions, Zhang added.
Zhang urged developed countries to transfer more technology and provide expert service to developing countries while increasing technological cooperation.
On nuclear safety and disposal of nuclear waste, Zhang said these are the major issues contributing to the public's negative view on nuclear energy and require urgent attention.
The Chinese delegation believes the IAEA, as an authoritative international organization, could improve international conventions and standards on nuclear safety and improve technological exchange to help member states maintain their nuclear safety levels.
On the issue of establishing a reliable shield for non-proliferation, Zhang said the Chinese delegation supports the IAEA in setting up more safeguards and establishing a reliable non-proliferation shield within its mandate.
China also holds that establishing a world-wide stable security environment is key to preventing nuclear weapons proliferation. Promoting international cooperation will also play a role, as will removing double or multiple non-proliferation standards.
Non-proliferation should be supplementary to promotion activities rather than hamper member states' justifiable rights to peaceful application of nuclear energy.
The IAEA is an inter-governmental organization established in 1957. Its main objectives are to enlarge the contribution of atomic energy to peace, health and prosperity throughout the world and to ensure nuclear assistance under its supervision is not used for military purposes. China became a member state in 1984.
The 44th Session of the IAEA General Conference started on Monday and will conclude this Friday.
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