The minister made the remarks at the International Conference on Nuclear Security: Sustaining and Strengthening Efforts (ICONS 2020) in Vienna Feb. 10, the Foreign Ministry told AzVision.az.
“Especially, in the face of persistent threat of radical extremism and terrorism in the region and due to our geographic location, we attach the utmost importance to the prevention of use of our territory as a transit route for illicit nuclear trafficking,” the top diplomat said.
He stressed that Azerbaijan, in close cooperation with its international partners, has developed a comprehensive national export control system with a solid legislation basis in line with international standards. “However, due to the continued occupation of about twenty percent of our territory by Armenia, we are unable to provide proper control along a substantial part of our borders. This situation offers favorable conditions for illegal activities, including for nuclear smuggling and nuclear terrorism.”
The minister reiterated Azerbaijan’s commitment to continue cooperation with international organizations and its partners in strengthening nuclear security in the region and around the world and reducing threats emanating from illicit trafficking in nuclear and radioactive materials and counts on support and cooperation of the IAEA in this matter.
“Reiterating the importance of this Conference in promoting nuclear security worldwide, Azerbaijan supports the Ministerial Declaration of International Conference on Nuclear Security: Sustaining and Strengthening Efforts,” Minister Mammadyarov added.
He noted that international cooperation has always been at the center of Azerbaijan’s efforts in the field of nuclear security and safety. “We believe that the progress achieved in this area strengthens peace and security and promotes confidence. Our activities in this field have always been target-oriented and conducted in the spirit of mutual respect and cooperation.”
Minister Mammadyarov pointed out that Azerbaijan recognizes and commends the key role of IAEA in developing nuclear security regulations and standards.
“Azerbaijan has developed a successful cooperation with the Agency on various aspects of nuclear security. We are ready to deepen existing fruitful collaboration. Azerbaijan participates in international information sharing on illicit trafficking issues through contribution to the IAEA Incident and Trafficking Database,” the top diplomat concluded.