North Korea, No Crisis

The International Atomic Energy Agency has stated that it intends to return its team of inspectors to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) to Pyongyang in the coming days after its team was expelled earlier this week.

Despite the fact that the IAEA considers that the expulsion order is a “clear violation” of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, a position backed by Washington, which expressed its preoccupation, it is clear from the declarations of IAEA officials in Vienna, its Headquarters, that there is confidence that the inspections programme in the DPRK will continue, possibly on Monday or Tuesday.

Optimistically, the IAEA spokesperson Melissa Fleming stated that “We have our office and all our equipment there (in Pyongyang) and we demand that North Korea allows the inspectors back as soon as possible”.

In the absence of belligerent rhetoric from Washington, focussed again on its obsession, Iraq, it is the IAEA that takes the stage. The Director-General of the Agency, Mohammed El-Baradei, sent a draft proposal for a resolution to the 35 members of the executive council of the IAEA last Tuesday, after a report outlining the history of the DPRK cooperation with the Agency had been studied.

The fact that the issue is being taken up in a low-profile mode with an agency and not on an official status by Washington means that the diplomatic machine controlled by the energy lobby, which controls the US foreign policy, has decided that either it does not know what to do, or is not interested enough to get involved.

After all, how many oil wells does the DPRK have?


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