Egypt stresses need for Israel to join NPT

21:43, September 06, 2010      

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The Egyptian Foreign Ministry has renewed calls for Israel to join the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and to open up its facilities for inspection by the international watchdog.

Any talk about freeing the Middle East of nuclear weapons would be meaningless if the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) continues to be denied access to Israel's reactors, state-run MENA news agency quoted Egyptian Foreign Ministry spokesman Hossam Zaki as saying on Monday, commenting on an IAEA report on Israel's nuclear capabilities.

Israel will continue to pose a central threat to the region so long as it rejects to join the NPT as a nuclear-free country and as it keeps its facilities closed to inspection, Zaki added.

Zaki urged the IAEA and the international community to pressure Israel to join the treaty and allow inspectors to visit its reactors.

According to a report issued by IAEA on Friday, the agency's chief Yukiya Amano has asked Israel to consider signing up to the treaty.

A total of 189 states have joined the NPT treaty which came into force in March 1970. India, Pakistan and Israel have declined to sign the treaty, while the Democratic People's Republic of Korea announced its withdrawal from the treaty in 2003.

Source: Xinhua


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