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  •  Iran ll accept EU proposals if they meet its demands
    Iran ‘ll accept EU proposals if they meet its demands
     Iran ll accept EU proposals if they meet its demands
    Iran ‘ll accept EU proposals if they meet its demands
    Foreign4 days ago

    Iran ‘ll accept EU proposals if they meet its demands

    An Iranian diplomat said Friday that the European Union (EU) proposals for reviving a 2015 nuclear deal would be acceptable only if the fulfilment of Iran’s demands is ensured.

    This is according to the official news agency IRNA.

    The diplomat said on condition of anonymity that Iran was reviewing the proposals to see if they had “credibility’’ in meeting Iran’s various demands.

    This included resolving political claims about IAEA safeguards, removing sanctions on Iran, and having all sides guaranteed to reach a potential agreement at the end of the nuclear negotiations.

    The EU on Monday put forward a “final text” of the draft decision on reviving the nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), while awaiting political decisions from the participants in the Vienna talks.

    The talks began in April 2021 in the Austrian capital but were suspended in March because of political differences between Tehran and Washington.

    The latest round of talks, which had begun on Thursday following a five-month hiatus, came to an end on Monday.

    Iran signed the JCPOA with world powers in July 2015, agreeing to curb its nuclear program in return for the removal of sanctions on the country.

    However, former U.

    S. President Donald Trump pulled Washington out of the agreement and reimposed unilateral sanctions on Tehran, prompting the latter to drop some of its commitments under the pact.

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    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Concern grows over situation at beleaguered Ukrainian nuclear plant
    Concern grows over situation at beleaguered Ukrainian nuclear plant
     Concern grows over situation at beleaguered Ukrainian nuclear plant
    Concern grows over situation at beleaguered Ukrainian nuclear plant
    Foreign7 days ago

    Concern grows over situation at beleaguered Ukrainian nuclear plant

    Concern grows over situation at beleaguered Ukrainian nuclear plant Concern grows over situation at beleaguered Ukrainian nuclear plant ConcernMoscow,  Aug. 9,  2022 As Russia again accused Ukraine of shelling the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant in the south of the beleaguered country, concern grew for the safety of the complex which has seen repeated shelling in recent days.

    An accident at the Ukrainian nuclear plant in Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhya would be far worse than the Chernobyl or Fukushima disasters, Yevheny Zymbalyuk, the Ukrainian ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said in Vienna.

    He warned of severe consequences not only for Ukraine, but all of Europe.

    UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres also warned of the danger of the current situation.

    “Any attack on a nuclear plant is a “suicidal thing”, Guterres asserted.

    “What will happen in a radius of 40 or 50 kilometres of the station, that is absolutely not comparable to Chernobyl or Fukushima,” Zymbalyuk added.

    Analysts however say compared to the plants at Chernobyl and Fukushima, Zaporizhzhya is better protected thanks to a separate cooling circuit and a special protective layer, although it would probably be unable to withstand a targeted military attack.

    Zymbalyuk again demanded monitors from the IAEA to be sent to Zaporizhzhya along with unarmed international military observers.

    He said IAEA representatives should be on the ground by the end of the month.

    The IAEA has long complained that it is waiting to access the plant and said that any deployment would require the support of both Moscow and Kiev. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov urged the West to put pressure on Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky as Moscow accuses Ukraine of shelling the nuclear plant.

    “We expect that the countries that have absolute influence over the Ukrainian leadership will use this to prevent further shelling,” Peskov said, according to the Interfax agency.

    Peskov spoke of a “highly dangerous activity” with, in the worst case, catastrophic consequences for all of Europe.

    With his call for the West to influence the Ukrainian leadership, he once again made it clear that there is no longer a connection between Moscow and Kiev after peace negotiations were broken off in May. New negotiations are not in sight.

    In Washington, a White House spokeswoman Monday said the U.

    S. continues to “closely monitor the activity as the NPP the Department of Energy and the National Nuclear Security Administration report that the radiation sensors are continuing to provide data, and thankfully we have seen no indications of increased or abnormal radiation levels.

    ” “And we continue to call on Russia to cease all military operations at or near Ukrainian nuclear facilities and return full control to Ukraine,” spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre added.

    The Pentagon announced further arms sales to Ukraine, with a billion-dollar package including additional ammunition for rocket launcher systems and 1,000 Javelin anti-tank missiles.

    It also estimates that up to 80,000 people have been killed for or injured on the Russian side in the Ukraine war.

    Meanwhile, the go-ahead has been given for a referendum on accession to Russia in the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhya region.

    The regional governor, Yevhen Balytskyi, said on Monday he was signing a decree ordering the Central Electoral Commission to start to prepare a referendum on the unification of the region with the Russian Federation, according to the Russian state agency Ria Novosti.

    Balytskyi spoke at the “We are together with Russia” forum organised by the occupying forces in Melitopol.

    Zaporizhzhya, the regional capital, is still under Kiev’s control.

    It is unclear how such a vote, which Ukraine would not recognise, will be organised.

    Zelensky has already warned that referendums organised by the occupying forces would end all chances of peace talks with Russia.

    Balytskyi did not give a specific date for the planned vote.

    In the past, the beginning of September was discussed as a possible period.

    Meanwhile, a Russian soldier in the northern Ukrainian city of Chernihiv was sentenced to 10 years in prison on charges of war crimes.

    The court considered it proven that the tank soldier fired on a multi-storey apartment building, carrying out an order shortly after the war began at the end of February, Ukrainian public television reported on Monday.

    The soldier had pleaded guilty and is to be imprisoned for 10 years, but the sentence will only become final after a possible appeal.

    YEE(
    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  UN chief condemns attack on Ukraine s nuclear power station
    UN chief condemns attack on Ukraine’s nuclear power station
     UN chief condemns attack on Ukraine s nuclear power station
    UN chief condemns attack on Ukraine’s nuclear power station
    Foreign7 days ago

    UN chief condemns attack on Ukraine’s nuclear power station

    UN Secretary-General António Guterres has condemned the recent attack on a nuclear power station in southern Ukraine, noting that any attack on nuclear plants is suicidal.

    Both Moscow and Kyiv have denied responsibility for the strike on the Zaporizhzhia plant over the weekend.

    Guterres condemned the attack on the plants on Monday at a meeting in Tokyo with Japan National Press Club. The UN chief expressed hoped that the UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) would be able to access the plant for inspection.

    While Europe’s largest nuclear power site has been under Russian control since the early days of the war, Ukrainian technicians are still running it.

    Energoatom, Ukraine’s nuclear power plant operator, said that Russian shelling damaged three radiation monitors around the storage facility for spent nuclear fuels, in which one worker was injured.

    The shelling prompted IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi to warn that the way in which Zaporizhzhia was being run coupled with the fighting around it posed the very real risk of a nuclear disaster.

    Since then, a preliminary assessment by UN atomic overseer experts found that the safety and security situation seemed stable with no immediate threat, despite that several pillars were breached.

    “We support the IAEA on their efforts in relation to create the conditions of stabilisation of that plant,” Guterres said, adding that his hope that the IAEA would be able to access the plant.

    When asked why a peace deal between Russia and Ukraine had not yet been realised, the UN chief said they had been working very closely with Türkiye, which had launched a new initiative in relation to a possible start of peace negotiations.

    But he explained that Ukraine cannot accept that its territory is taken by another country and that Russia does not seem ready to accept that areas it had taken will not be annexed by the Russian Federation or give way to new independent States.

    Guterres’ comments followed a visit to Hiroshima over the weekend, where he marked the 77th anniversary of the world’s first nuclear attack on August 6, 1945, destroying the city and killing 140,000 people.

    Amidst Russian threats of a nuclear attack since it invaded Ukraine in February, fears of a third atomic bombing have grown.

    The UN chief reiterated his warning over the use of nuclear weapons, saying if used, the UN would probably be unable respond.

    “We might all not be here anymore,” he said.

    Against the backdrop that the world currently has 13,000 nuclear bombs while continuing to make huge investments into modernising atomic arsenals, Guterres warned that after decades of nuclear disarmament efforts, we are moving backwards.

    “Stop it,” he appealed, underscoring that the billions of dollars being leveraged into the arms race need to be used in fighting climate change, fighting poverty, and addressing the needs of the international community.

    Meanwhile, the secretary-general has travelled to Mongolia and South Korea from Japan to discuss ways to address North Korea’s nuclear development.

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    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Any attack on a nuclear plant suicidal UN chief Guterres
    Any attack on a nuclear plant ‘suicidal’: UN chief Guterres
     Any attack on a nuclear plant suicidal UN chief Guterres
    Any attack on a nuclear plant ‘suicidal’: UN chief Guterres
    Foreign1 week ago

    Any attack on a nuclear plant ‘suicidal’: UN chief Guterres

    Any attack on a nuclear plant is “suicidal”, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned Monday after fresh shelling hit a huge atomic power complex in southern Ukraine.

    Moscow and Kyiv blame each other for the latest strike at the Zaporizhzhia plant, Europe’s largest nuclear power site, which has been under Russian control since the early days of the war.

    The fighting on Friday at the plant has prompted the UN’s nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to warn of “the very real risk of a nuclear disaster”.

    At a press conference in Tokyo, Guterres condemned such attacks without saying either side was responsible.

    “We support the IAEA on their efforts in relation to create the conditions of stabilisation of that plant,” he said.

    “Any attack to a nuclear plant is a suicidal thing.

    I hope that those attacks will end, and at the same time I hope that the IAEA will be able to access the plant.

    ”His comments followed a visit to Hiroshima over the weekend, where Guterres gave a speech to mark the 77th anniversary of the world’s first nuclear bomb attack.

    In the Japanese city on Saturday, he warned that “humanity is playing with a loaded gun” as crises with the potential for nuclear disaster proliferate worldwide, from Ukraine to the Middle East and the Korean peninsula.

    The Portuguese 73-year-old also delivered a stark warning against the horrors of atomic weapons a week ago in New York at a key nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty conference, which he reiterated on Monday.

    “We are witnessing a radicalisation in the geopolitical situation that makes the risk of a nuclear war again something we cannot completely forget,” he said.

    When asked about China’s massive military exercises around Taiwan, sparked by a visit last week to the self-ruled island by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Guterres said the UN “abides by a resolution of the General Assembly, the so-called One China policy”.

    “But we all want that resolution to correspond to a peaceful environment,” he said, calling for common sense and restraint to allow for an “extremely important” de-escalation.

  •  More Ukraine grain sets sail as new strike hits nuclear site
    More Ukraine grain sets sail as new strike hits nuclear site
     More Ukraine grain sets sail as new strike hits nuclear site
    More Ukraine grain sets sail as new strike hits nuclear site
    Foreign1 week ago

    More Ukraine grain sets sail as new strike hits nuclear site

    Four more ships loaded with grain set off from Ukrainian ports on Sunday, as Moscow and Kyiv blamed each other for a new strike at a Russian-occupied nuclear plant.

    Amnesty International, meanwhile, said it deeply regretted the “distress and anger” caused after it alleged Ukrainian forces were flouting international law by exposing civilians to Russian fire.

    But it stands by its controversial report.

    Kyiv’s infrastructure ministry wrote on Telegram that a second convoy of Ukrainian supplies had just left, three from Chornomorsk and one from Odessa.

    The Mustafa Necati, the Star Helena, the Glory and the Riva Wind were carrying “around 170,000 tonnes of agriculture-related merchandise”, it said.

    Moscow and Kyiv traded accusations Sunday over who bombed the Zaporizhzhia nuclear site in southern Ukraine.

    Europe’s largest atomic power complex has been under Russian control since the early days of the February 24 invasion.

    And as Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky welcomed US actress Jessica Chastain to Ukraine, Moscow celebrated the re-election of a former senior Russian politician to the world body governing chess.

    – ‘Very real risk’ –Recent fighting at the plant has prompted UN’s nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to warn of “the very real risk of a nuclear disaster”.

    Russia’s occupying authorities in the town of Enerhodar, where the plant is located, said the Ukrainian army overnight “carried out a strike with a cluster bomb fired from an Uragan multiple rocket launcher”.

    The projectiles fell “within 400 metres of a working reactor” and in a “zone storing used nuclear fuel”, Russia’s state news agency TASS reported.

    Ukraine’s state nuclear energy company Enerhoatom however said the “Russian occupiers once again fired rockets at the nuclear power plant its host town, Enerhodar.

    One worker there had been hospitalised with shrapnel wounds, it added.

    AFP was not able to confirm the allegations from an independent source.

    On Saturday, Enerhoatom had already said parts of the facility had been “seriously damaged” by military strikes the previous day, forcing the shutdown of one of its reactors.

    IAEA chief Rafael Grossi warned Saturday: “Any military firepower directed at or from the facility would amount to playing with fire, with potentially catastrophic consequences.

    ” Zelensky in his nightly address Sunday called for a “principled response” from the international community.

    Evoking the possibility that the plant was hit causing the release of a toxic cloud, he added: No one will stop the wind that will spread the radioactive contamination.

    ”– Amnesty’s regret –Amnesty International sparked outrage in Ukraine with a report Thursday accusing the military of endangering civilians by establishing bases in schools and hospitals and launching counter-attacks from heavily populated areas.

    The head of their Ukraine bureau resigned over the report, accusing Amnesty of becoming “a tool of Russian propaganda”.

    On Sunday, the rights group said that while it stood by its finding, “nothing we documented Ukrainian forces doing in any way justifies Russian violations”.

    The renewed shipments of Ukrainian grain to help ease global food shortages and bring down prices nevertheless offer a small glimmer of hope as the war enters its sixth month.

    Ukraine, one of the world’s largest grain exporters, had been forced to halt almost all deliveries in the wake of Russia’s invasion.

    That sent global food prices soaring, making imports prohibitively expensive for some of the world’s poorest nations.

    A bulk carrier arrived in Chornomorsk on Saturday to be loaded with grain for the first time since Moscow’s invasion.

    The departure Sunday of the four other vessels follows several others last week under a deal brokered with the help of Turkey.

    – ‘Sign of hope‘ –In Rome on Sunday, Pope Francis welcomed the resumption of grain exports as “a sign of hope” that showed dialogue was possible to end the war.

    “I sincerely hope that, following this path, we can put an end to the fighting and arrive at a just and lasting peace.

    ”Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky posted pictures on Telegram Sunday of a meeting with Oscar-winning actress Jessica Chastain.

    Underlining the value of visits from famous people, he wrote: “Thanks to this, the world will hear, know and understand the truth about what is happening in our country even more.

    ” Earlier Sunday, Moscow celebrated a diplomatic victory of its own with the re-election of Russia’s Arkady Dvorkovich to the helm of the international chess body FIDE.

    Dvorkovich, a former deputy premier under Russian President Vladimir Putin, comfortably saw off a challenge from Ukrainian grandmaster Andrii Baryshpolets who had accused him of being part of Moscow’s “war machine”.

    Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov called it “clearly very good news and a very significant victory”, Russia’s TASS news agency reported.

  •  Workshop of the International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations FAO strengthens the food safety net in Africa
    Workshop of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) strengthens the food safety net in Africa
     Workshop of the International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations FAO strengthens the food safety net in Africa
    Workshop of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) strengthens the food safety net in Africa
    Africa2 weeks ago

    Workshop of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) strengthens the food safety net in Africa

    Supporting initiatives to improve food safety across the continent was the focus of an African workshop on food safety jointly organized by the IAEA, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the National Metrology Institute of South Africa (NMISA).

    More than 280 experts and researchers from food safety regulators, food testing laboratories, food manufacturers, and governmental and non-governmental organizations from 43 countries shared experiences on vital topics such as food fraud prevention, radionuclide control, use of radio receptor assays and stable isotope techniques for residues of veterinary drugs and pesticides, as well as mycotoxins, toxic metals and biotoxins.

    Participants also addressed responding to foodborne illness and disease outbreaks, setting maximum residue limits, and implementing effective food monitoring and surveillance programs.

    “This workshop showed the commitment of the African continent to not only increase food and trade safety nationally and in the region, but also to support the achievement of several Sustainable Development Goals, including good health and well-being, industry, innovation and infrastructure, as well as ending poverty and hunger,” said Shaukat Abdulrazak, Director of the IAEA's Division of Technical Cooperation for Africa.

    “African Union leadership and various stakeholders across the continent discussed cross-cutting food security issues and had a common voice on strategies to support the African Continental Free Trade Area, address food trade rejections and ensure consumer protection and food safety.

    During the five-day event held in Johannesburg, South Africa, from June 27 to July 1, 2022, participants discussed the benefits of ISO accreditation for food safety and international trade; ways to collect scientifically reliable data on levels of food hazards, such as mycotoxins, drug and pesticide residues, persistent pollutants, toxic metals and microplastics; and how to develop laboratory tests and reference material adapted to the region, which could allow countries to provide better analytical services.

    "We need to develop institutional excellence, which would lead to more ISO accreditation for laboratory services," said Ndwakhulu Mukhufhi, executive director of NMISA.

    “This can be achieved by sharing relevant reference material and conducting training programs.

    Institutions like NMISA are here to support”.

    Participants agreed that there was a need throughout the region to raise awareness of food safety among the general public.

    They also agreed that capacities and mechanisms to set food safety standards, including maximum residue limits, should be strengthened, and that it was important to adopt a One Health approach to food safety in Africa.

    “Establishing and promoting networks is a top priority,” said Liang Qu, Director of the Joint FAO/IAEA Center for Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture.

    “Networks and events of this type offer Member States a platform to share knowledge and experiences on food safety.

    Leveraging the strengths of nuclear science, the Joint Center will continue to serve as a mechanism to transfer relevant technology, addressing current and emerging food safety and trade issues.” The workshop coincided with the launch of the Food Security Strategy for Africa (2022-2036) by the African Union Development Agency, which aims to improve public health, food and nutrition security, sustainable livelihoods and economic growth.

    The African Union had already established a roadmap to strengthen the capacities of its member countries in the area of ​​food security in its Sanitary and Phytosanitary Policy Framework for Africa launched in 2019.

    “The incorporation of the policy framework and strategy in regional economic communities and member states' long-term strategies and frameworks is critical for sustainable financing and implementation,” added Godfrey Bahiigwa, Director of the African Union Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.

  •  Iran demands IAEA to withdraw accusations before reactivating surveillance cameras
    Iran demands IAEA to withdraw accusations before reactivating surveillance cameras
     Iran demands IAEA to withdraw accusations before reactivating surveillance cameras
    Iran demands IAEA to withdraw accusations before reactivating surveillance cameras
    Foreign2 weeks ago

    Iran demands IAEA to withdraw accusations before reactivating surveillance cameras

    Iran said on Thursday that it will reactivate the surveillance cameras of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) at its nuclear sites only if IAEA withdraws its accusations against Tehran.

    Mohammad Eslami, president of the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran, was also quoted by the official news agency, IRNA as saying that Iran seeks to achieve a good agreement at the Vienna talks.

    The talks would safeguard its people’s interests, according to the top nuclear official.

    In June, the IAEA Board of Governors passed an anti-Iran resolution proposed by the U.

    S., Britain, France and Germany.

    The proposal followed the agency’s reports that Tehran had not provided technically credible explanations for uranium particles found at three undeclared sites.

    After the adoption of the IAEA resolution, Iran announced a number of countermeasures, including turning off the IAEA’s surveillance cameras at its nuclear sites.

    Speaking of the ongoing talks in Vienna to revive the 2015 deal, Eslami expressed the hope for the U.

    S. side to show goodwill and willingness to reach an agreement, and refrain from breaking its promises.

    Iran signed a nuclear deal with world powers in July 2015, agreeing to curb its nuclear programme in return for the removal of sanctions on the country.

    However, former U.

    S. President, Donald Trump pulled Washington out of the agreement and re-imposed unilateral sanctions on Tehran, prompting the latter to drop some of its commitments under the pact.

    The talks on reviving the nuclear pact began in April 2021 in the Austrian capital of Vienna but were suspended in March this year because of the political differences between Tehran and Washington.

    After almost five months, delegations from the remaining signatories to the JCPOA, as well as the U.

    S., are currently in Vienna for a fresh round of talks on the revival of the agreement.


    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  IAEA chief Grossi concerned about Ukrainian nuclear power plant
    IAEA chief Grossi concerned about Ukrainian nuclear power plant
     IAEA chief Grossi concerned about Ukrainian nuclear power plant
    IAEA chief Grossi concerned about Ukrainian nuclear power plant
    Foreign2 weeks ago

    IAEA chief Grossi concerned about Ukrainian nuclear power plant

    The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has described the situation at Ukraine’s Russian-occupied nuclear power plant in Zaporizhzhya as highly volatile and fragile.

    All the principles of nuclear safety had been violated in one way or another, Rafael Grossi told a press conference at the UN headquarters in New York late Tuesday.

    With six units and a capacity of 6,000 megawatts, the plant in the city of Enerhodar in Zaporizhzhya province is the largest nuclear power plant in Europe.

    An IAEA inspection to check technical safety was urgently needed, Grossi said.

    But it is currently very difficult for the IAEA to even get to the war zone in Zaporizhzhya.

    For this, the IAEA not only needed  the consent of Ukraine and the support of the UN, it would also have to come to an agreement with Russia as the occupier of the site.

    Russian troops had occupied the plant at the beginning of March.

    After that, the nuclear power plant continued to be operated by Ukrainian personnel but monitored by Russian nuclear specialists.

    Earlier this week, U.

    S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken also expressed deep concern on the part of the U.

    S. government.

    He said there were credible reports that Russia was using the facility near Zaporizhzhya as a kind of shield, namely firing on Ukrainian forces from near the facility.

    The Ukrainians, on the other hand, could not  fire back because this could lead to a terrible nuclear accident, Blinken said.

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    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Iran says ready to restart nuclear talks
    Iran says ready to restart nuclear talks
     Iran says ready to restart nuclear talks
    Iran says ready to restart nuclear talks
    Foreign2 weeks ago

    Iran says ready to restart nuclear talks

    Iran is ready to restart talks on its contested nuclear programme, Foreign Office spokesman Nasser Kanaani said in Tehran on Monday.

    “We have over recent days received important messages.

    “There will indeed soon be the opportunity for new negotiations,’’ Kanaani said.

    Kanaani said Iran was aiming at a definitive end to the conflict over its nuclear programme but did not say when or where the talks would take place.

    Chief nuclear negotiator Ali Bagheri tweeted: “We are ready to bring the negotiations to a conclusion over the short term.

    ’’ Talks on reviving the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and the six other parties to the agreement China, Germany, France, Britain, Russia and the United States – have been deadlocked since March.

    The outstanding points of conflict included lifting U.

    S.-imposed sanctions and the status of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard (IRGC), which was listed by the U.

    S. as a terrorist organisation.

    Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi has called for the lifting of all the sanctions imposed by the U.

    S. following its unilateral withdrawal in 2018 from the nuclear deal during the presidency of Donald Trump.

    Tehran has repeatedly insisted that the nuclear deal was of no value to the country without the lifting of sanctions.

    In the event the talks failed, Iran has also held out the possibility of ending cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

    The IAEA’s monitoring cameras have been sealed, and the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran (AEOI) has made clear they would not be unsealed until a new deal is reached.

    Iran has proceeded with uranium enrichment to the level of 60 per cent, well above the 3.6 per cent permitted under UN resolutions.

    Tehran has indicated it is able to attain the 90 per cent needed for a nuclear weapon.

    U.

    S. policy under President Joe Biden remained that Iran should not acquire a nuclear weapon.

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    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Zimbabwe updates National Cancer Control Plan to mitigate the increase of cases in the country
    Zimbabwe updates National Cancer Control Plan to mitigate the increase of cases in the country
     Zimbabwe updates National Cancer Control Plan to mitigate the increase of cases in the country
    Zimbabwe updates National Cancer Control Plan to mitigate the increase of cases in the country
    Africa2 months ago

    Zimbabwe updates National Cancer Control Plan to mitigate the increase of cases in the country

    Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide, accounting for almost 10 million deaths in 2020. Between 2009 and 2018, cancer cases in Zimbabwe nearly doubled according to the national cancer registry. This has been due to factors such as behavioral risk factors for cancer, poor access to early diagnostic treatment and palliative care. To deal with the increase in cases, the Ministry of Health and Child Care (MoHCC), with the technical and financial support of the World Health Organization (WHO) of Zimbabwe and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), convened a workshop to update the country's National Cancer Program. Control Plan (NCCCP) that was in force from 2014-2018. The workshop was held June 6-10, 2022 with key experts in cancer prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care; including palliative care, participating in the workshop. As well as major cancer stakeholders namely Cancer Association of Zimbabwe (CAZ), Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI), Hospice and Palliative Care Association of Zimbabwe (HOSPAZ).

    The workshop was held at a time when Zimbabwe has had two previous NCCPs with the most recent ending in 2018. Additionally, the Government of Zimbabwe (GoZ) has been implementing various strategies covering cancer prevention, early diagnosis; including screening, treatment and care, to address the growing burden of cancer. Such strategies include the introduction of the human papillomavirus vaccine against cervical cancer. The country also has a cervical cancer screening program that ensures early detection and treatment of cervical pre-cancer, as well as early cancer treatment. In addition, GoZ has trained oncology specialists, oncology nurses and radiation oncologists at the central government hospital in Harare. The GdZ has also ensured that the necessary human resource capacity for cancer treatment and care is available in the public hospital. In addition, the National Pharmaceutical Company, which procures medicines for the country, has been trained to ensure that critical medicines are available and accessible.

    The goal of the week-long workshop was to review and finalize the NCCP draft covering the period 2022-2026. The process for the development of this NCCP began with the broad stakeholder meeting held in Bulawayo in November 2021. During this stakeholder meeting, priorities for the new NCCP 2022-2026 were identified and developed. Subsequently, the MoHCC appointed a technical team to develop a draft NCCP.

    The draft NCCP is aligned with the Zimbabwe National Health Strategy (NHS) 2020-2025. The NCCP draft recommends priority interventions across seven pillars including; Cancer control governance, policy and planning; prevention; Early Detection and Diagnosis; diagnosis; treatment; palliative care, rehabilitation and survival; Y; Cancer surveillance and research.

    In his remarks, Munyaradzi Dobbie, MD, MoHCC, Chief Director of Public Health Services, said, “The NCCP will be our guiding document for mitigating cancer, a major challenge in the health care system. It will help us ensure that available resources are maximised, as well as mobilize different sectors of society towards a common goal of reducing the burden of cancer. Without this NCCP plan, we will not be able to do that.”

    Key stakeholders also expressed appreciation for governments' renewed commitment to address the growing burden of cancer in Zimbabwe. IAEA Program Officer Marianna Nobile stated that the support provided by the IAEA together with the WHO is aimed at promoting the safe, peaceful and secure application of nuclear science and technology to address the main priorities of sustainable development. "The IAEA stands ready to continue helping Zimbabwe improve its capabilities in nuclear and radiological medicine."

    At the end of the workshop, technical experts and stakeholders developed and agreed on a final draft of the NCCP 2022-2026. This document will be shared with the MoHCC for validation and further review to ensure consistency with NHS 2022-2025. Once the validation process is completed, the NCCP 2022-2026 will be financed with the technical support of the WHO. The budgeted NCCP will be officially launched after which it becomes the guiding document for cancer prevention and control in Zimbabwe for the next five years.

    The workshop was funded through the Global Initiative for Childhood Cancer (GICC); a collaboration of WHO and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Zimbabwe is one of the focus countries for the initiative.

    Following the workshop in Mazowe, the WHO and IAEA team paid a courtesy visit to MoHCC Permanent Secretary (PS), Dr. Jasper Chimedza, who reaffirmed GoZ's commitment to tackling the burden of cancer. “We appreciate the support of WHO and support the implementation of the budgeted NCCP once finalized,” said Dr. Chimedza.