International Atomic Energy Agency Criticizes United States after Syria Hearings

April 25, 2008 04:00 PM
by findingDulcinea Staff
The IAEA's Mohamed ElBaradei chastised the U.S. for witholding information about possible nuclear links between North Korea and Syria.

30-Second Summary

The CIA put a case before Congress on Thursday alleging that North Korea has been providing nuclear technology to Syria.

The congressional briefings come as U.S. representatives met with officials in North Korea about Pyongyang’s nuclear capabilities.

The State Department’s Koreas expert, Sung Kim, and his team arrived in North Korea on Tuesday, and is scheduled to report back to Washington on Friday about North Korea’s nuclear disarmament progress.

The Wall Street Journal had reported that Thursday’s briefings could provide the rationale the Bush administration has been looking for to justify a harder line with North Korea. Conservatives in Congress have also been calling for Washington to increase pressure on Pyongyang.

North Korea was supposed to release details about its nuclear weapons and facilities by Dec. 31, 2007, in line with a deal reached with America in October. North Korea also agreed to shut down its main nuclear reactor, and in exchange the United States would provide the nation with fuel oil.

However, Pyongyang has yet to keep its side part of the bargain, failing to fully report its nuclear activities.

Matt Dupuis of the Center for Strategic and International Studies urges Washington to continue with the diplomatic talks despite North Korea’s recent confrontational attitude toward South Korea. He says this belligerence was only “intended to signal to potential domestic critics and hard-line skeptics that the regime hasn't gone wholly soft in negotiations.”

However, Seattle Times writer Charles Krauthammer argues that the negotiations with North Korea have already failed, and it is time to move towards nuclear deterrence instead.

Headline Links: CIA briefs Congress

The congressional briefings
The allegations

Related Topic: U.S. delegation in North Korea

Opinion & Analysis: On the briefings and relations with North Korea

Reactions to the briefings
The future of U.S. policy on North Korea

Background: North Korea's nuclear program

Missed deadline
Israel attacks alleged nuclear facility in Syria
Nuclear program and military
1994 'Agreed Framework'

Biography: Kim Jong Il


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