Proposal to inspect Israeli nuclear site defeated

Egyptian submitted proposal to IAEA voted down 61-43; Netanyahu: there’s no place for a discussion of this sort while the main problem in the Middle East remains Iran’s attempts to obtain nuclear weapons

Israel's nuclear facility in Dimona (Reuters)

Israel’s nuclear facility in Dimona (Reuters)

A proposal submitted by Egypt to inspect Israel’s nuclear reactor in Dimona was blocked at the International Atomic Energy Agency General Assembly on Thursday in a vote 61-43.

Iran, Libya, Iraq, Turkey, Russia, China and South Africa backed the proposal, with several EU states, Japan, South Korea, Canada and Australia voting against the proposal.

Head of Isreal’s Atomic Energy Committee, Ze’ev Snir addressed and condemned the Arab group proposal stating that if the resolution had passed, “it will only hurt the credibility of the IAEA by politicizing the organization and reducing its valuable resources” and that “this is clearly beyond the scope and mandate of the IAEA. This debate has been forced upon the economic committee year after year and most of the member states have understood this after voting down these proposals three times in recent years.”

Snir addressed Iran as the major nuclear threat globally stating that “Iran has secretly worked towards a nuclear deal for decades. Iran only came to the table under heavy pressure from international sanctions.” He commended the IAEA and stated, “I want to commend the technical cooperation with the IAEA. In the last year, Israel has conducted exercises dealing with emergency responses to damaged nuclear reactors.”

Prime Minister Netanyahu stated following the vote, “I personally talked with more than 30 presidents, prime ministers and foreign ministers. In our conversations I explained that there’s no place for a discussion of this sort while the main problem in the Middle East remains Iran’s attempts to obtain nuclear weapons and its clear declarations of its intent to destroy the State of Israel.”