162 Note by Eklund1

Geneva, 15 May 1970


The Views of Member States2

[matter omitted]

1. Australia

30 April 1970

[matter omitted]

'3. The following considerations are most pressing for the Agency in formulating safeguards under Article III of the Treaty.

(a) Under the Treaty the task of safeguards is for the exclusive purpose of verifying fulfilment of the obligations assumed by non-nuclear-weapons States party to the Treaty with a view to prevent diversion of nuclear energy from peaceful uses to nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices;

(b) The present system of Agency safeguards as applied under the Statute and as described in the Agency document, 'The Agency's Safeguards System (1965, as Provisionally Extended in 1966 and 1968)', issued on 16 September 1968, would not appear to offer a satisfactory basis for safeguards under the Treaty. Article III.A.5 of the Statute states that the Agency is authorized to establish and administer safeguards to ensure that materials, equipment etc. are not used in such a way as to further any military purpose. This contrasts with (a) above: the Treaty therefore involves an important exception to the Statute;

(c) The safeguards procedures to be applied by the Agency under the Treaty must be effective and generally acceptable;

(d) A serious burden will be placed on the Agency's financial and technical resources. Therefore, safeguards under Article III of the Treaty must take this into account;

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(f) An unbalanced allocation of the Agency's funds and personnel to Treaty safeguards would lead to a diminution of the other major roles of the Agency in the promotion of the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, particularly in their application to developing countries;

(g) It is believed that a convenient and practical procedure would be for the Agency to develop a standard type of Safeguards Agreement applicable so far as appropriate to nonnuclear-weapons States under the Treaty. Such an agreement must legally conform to both the Non-Proliferation Treaty and the Statute of the Agency. [matter omitted]

'4. In considering the task facing the Agency as outlined above an acceptable solution can be achieved if:

(a) The application of safeguards under the Treaty is strictly limited to preventing the diversion of nuclear energy from peaceful uses to nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices, as required by Article III;

(b) Provisions are made to exclude from safeguards under the Treaty the safeguarding of ores containing nuclear materials, minerals, mines and activities related to the extraction or concentration of nuclear materials;

(c) Safeguards under the Treaty are applied in a manner such that the safeguards system concentrated on those nuclear materials and facilities from which the illicit manufacture of nuclear explosives would otherwise be a credible operation. It would follow that large quantities of source materials and nuclear materials containing low concentrations of fissionable isotopes need not be subjected to surveillance, thereby substantially decreasing the requirements for scientific and technical manpower as well as costs whilst maintaining effective control. The Agency would of necessity in this approach need to set carefully the levels of fissionable isotope content in the nuclear materials of concern, taking into account the various possible forms and conditions of the materials. Nuclear power reactors in themselves are a less likely place for a diversion of fissionable material to occur than other places in the nuclear field cycle.

[matter omitted]

'5. In sum, safeguards as applied under Article III of the Treaty should be uniform, nondiscriminatory, acceptable, and not unnecessarily burdensome or intrusive, free from any industrial espionage, economic in application and effective in preventing diversion of fissionable materials to the illicit manufacture of explosive nuclear devices. It is considered that a safeguards system based on the principles outlined above would effectively achieve the objectives of the Treaty.'

[NAA: A1838, 719/10/6 part 10]