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Report of the Secretary-General*
1. At its fifty-sixth session, on 29 November 2001, the General Assembly adopted resolution 56/27, entitled “The risk of nuclear proliferation in the Middle East”, in which the Assembly:
(a) Welcomed the conclusions on the Middle East of the 2000 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (para. 1);
(b) Reaffirmed the importance of Israel’s accession to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and placement of all its nuclear facilities under comprehensive International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards, in realizing the goal of universal adherence to the Treaty in the Middle East (para. 2);
(c) Called upon that State to accede to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons without further delay and not to develop, produce, test or otherwise acquire nuclear weapons, and to renounce possession of nuclear weapons, and to place all its unsafeguarded nuclear facilities under full-scope International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards as an important confidence-building measure among all States of the region and as a step towards enhancing peace and security (para. 3);
(d) Requested the Secretary-General to report to the General Assembly at its fifty-seventh session on the implementation of the resolution (para. 4).
2. The present report is being submitted pursuant to paragraph 4 of that resolution. Apart from the material forwarded by the International Atomic Energy Agency (see annex), the Secretary-General has not received any additional information since the submission of his most recent report on the subject (A/56/425) to the General Assembly at its fifty-sixth session.
The General Conference,
(b) Mindful of the usefulness of the Agency's safeguards system as a reliable means of verification of the peaceful uses of nuclear energy,
(c) Concerned by the grave consequences, endangering peace and security, of the presence in the Middle East region of nuclear activities not wholly devoted to peaceful purposes,
(d) Welcoming the initiatives regarding the establishment of a zone free of all weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear weapons, in the Middle East and recent initiatives regarding arms control in the region,
(e) Recognizing that full realization of these objectives would be promoted by the participation of all States of the region,
(f) Commending the efforts of the Agency concerning the application of safeguards in the Middle East and the positive response of some States in concluding a full-scope safeguards agreement, and
(g) Recalling its resolution GC(45)/RES/18,
2. Affirms the urgent need for all States in the Middle East to forthwith accept the application of full-scope Agency safeguards to all their nuclear activities as an important confidence-building measure among all States in the region and as a step in enhancing peace and security in the context of the establishment of a nuclear-weapon-free zone (NWFZ);
3. Calls upon all parties directly concerned to consider seriously taking the practical and appropriate steps required for the implementation of the proposal to establish a mutually and effectively verifiable NWFZ in the region, and invites the countries concerned to adhere to international non-proliferation regimes, including the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, as a means of complementing participation in a zone free of all weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East and of strengthening peace and security in the region;
4. Takes note of the importance of the on-going bilateral Middle East peace negotiations and the activities of the multilateral working group on Arms Control and Regional Security in promoting mutual confidence and security in the Middle East, including the establishment of an NWFZ, and calls on the Director General, as requested by the participants, to render all necessary assistance to the working group in promoting that objective;
5. Requests the Director General to continue consultations with the States of the Middle East to facilitate the early application of full-scope Agency safeguards to all nuclear activities in the region as relevant to the preparation of model agreements, as a necessary step towards the establishment of an NWFZ in the region, referred to in resolution GC( XXXVII)/RES/627;
6. Calls upon all States in the region to extend their fullest co-operation to the Director General in the fulfilment of the tasks entrusted to him in the preceding paragraph;
7. Further calls upon all States in the region to take measures, including confidence-building and verification measures, aimed at establishing an NWFZ in the Middle East;
8. Calls upon all other States, especially those with a special responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security, to render all assistance to the Director General by facilitating the implementation of this resolution; and
9. Requests the Director General to submit to the Board of Governors and to the General Conference at its forty-seventh regular session a report on the implementation of this resolution and to include in the provisional agenda for that session an item entitled "Application of IAEA safeguards in the Middle East".
* Finalization of the report was dependent on the outcome of the forty-sixth session of the General Conference of the International Atomic Energy Agency, 16 to 20 September 2002.