Thursday, 28 October 2021 05:41 GMT

Jordan advocates for nuke-, WMD-free Mideast, says official


(MENAFN- Jordan News Agency) Amman, Sep. 22 (Petra) -- Jordan has always advocated for a Middle East free of nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction (WMD) , said Khaled Toukan, Jordan Atomic Energy Commission (JAEC) Chairman.
The commission said, in a statement Wednesday, that Toukan underscored Jordan's ongoing support of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, and of limiting the use of nuclear energy to peaceful applications that benefit countries and peoples around the world, in accordance with the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.
Toukan made the remarks during the 65th regular session of the General Conference of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), currently being held in the Austrian capital, Vienna.
Speaking for Jordan during the session, the JAEC Chairman stated that the IAEA's support to member states, including Jordan, to address the COVID-19 pandemic, is a prime example of leveraging nuclear technologies to respond to emerging situations, especially when it comes to global health.
He said that the agency's launch of an integrated project to combat zoonotic diseases was an indication of its status as a frontrunner in supporting national and regional capacities in the detection and prevention of these diseases.
Toukan pointed to the development of technical cooperation between Jordan and the IAEA, upon which the Kingdom hosted a higher university educational course in radiation protection and safety of radioactive sources in Arabic.
The course was based on a curriculum that is in line with the developments of the nuclear energy program in Jordan, which resulted in the establishment of two advanced scientific centers in the region; the Jordan Nuclear Research and Training Reactor and the International Center for Synchrotron-Light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East (SESAME).
During the session, Toukan also reviewed the key achievements of the Kingsdom's nuclear energy program, which include a nuclear power plant project, a uranium exploration and mining project and the development of human resources.
Toukan, and an accompanying delegation, met with a number of Arab and foreign delegations participating in the conference to discuss cooperation in the field of peaceful application of nuclear energy.
The delegation also held meetings with high-ranking officials of the IAEA, including the agency's Director General Rafael Grossi, Deputy Director-General for Technical Cooperation Hua Liu, Deputy Director-General for Nuclear Applications Najat Mokhtar, Deputy Director-General for Nuclear Security and Safety Lydie Evrard, and Deputy Director-General Nuclear Energy, Mikhail Chudakov.
On the sidelines of the session, Toukan participated as a keynote speaker in a symposium, organized by the agency, on cooperation in nuclear science and technology for development in Asia and the Pacific. He highlighted the importance of SESAME as a mainstay in applied sciences and as the first regional research center.
SESAME, he noted, promotes scientific and technological excellence in the Middle East and globally by enabling world-class research in topics ranging from medicine, biology, health and the environment to materials science, physics, chemistry and archeology.
It also connects neighboring countries and promotes mutual understanding through collaborative research projects between scholars from different cultural and cognitive backgrounds.

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