U.S. Lauds Myanmar’s Acceptance of Heightened Atomic Inspections

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Global Security Newswire Staff
Sept. 20, 2013, 7:02 a.m.

The United States on Thursday ap­plauded My­an­mar for sign­ing a leg­al doc­u­ment that per­mits heightened in­ter­na­tion­al in­spec­tions of both known and sus­pec­ted nuc­le­ar sites in the coun­try, the As­so­ci­ated Press re­por­ted.

My­an­mar’s Tues­day sign­ing of the In­ter­na­tion­al Atom­ic En­ergy Agency’s Ad­di­tion­al Pro­tocol will sup­port bring­ing the formerly isol­ated coun­try “in­creas­ingly in line with in­ter­na­tion­al non­pro­lif­er­a­tion norms and stand­ards,” the State De­part­ment said.

Na­tions that sign the pro­tocol are grant­ing IAEA in­spect­ors great­er phys­ic­al ac­cess to sites in their coun­try, the abil­ity to con­duct snap in­spec­tions of fa­cil­it­ies and more in­form­a­tion about their atom­ic activ­it­ies.

For years, the United States and most West­ern na­tions shunned the former mil­it­ary junta-run gov­ern­ment in My­an­mar. The junta was re­peatedly ac­cused of en­ga­ging in il­leg­al con­ven­tion­al weapons com­merce with North Korea. Some non­pro­lif­er­a­tion ex­perts also sus­pect the South­east Asi­an state of at one point col­lab­or­at­ing with the North on es­tab­lish­ing a secret nuc­le­ar pro­gram.

Since 2011, My­an­mar’s of­fi­cially ci­vil­ian-led gov­ern­ment has car­ried out a num­ber of eco­nom­ic, polit­ic­al and hu­man rights re­forms that have led the United States and oth­er na­tions to re­lax sanc­tions against the coun­try.

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