Journal Article

Developing IAEA Safeguards: An Institutional Perspective on the State-level Concept

Tom Coppen

in Journal of Conflict and Security Law

Volume 20, issue 2, pages 169-193
Published in print July 2015 | ISSN: 1467-7954
Published online April 2015 | e-ISSN: 1467-7962 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jcsl/krv004
Developing IAEA Safeguards: An Institutional Perspective on the State-level Concept

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The implementation of International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards in the context of the State-level Concept (SLC) has faced significant opposition from a group of IAEA Member States. This article explores the possible reasons for such opposition. It focuses on the issues of the scope of the mandate of the IAEA and on right to use third-party information to draw safeguards conclusions. Both are controversial aspects of safeguards implementation that are connected to the SLC. Analysing these issues from a legal–institutional perspective, this article concludes that neither the IAEA nor its organs were acting ultra vires in incorporating these elements into the SLC. The fact that the institutional framework of the IAEA is sufficiently flexible to allow these developments despite minority opposition, however, camouflages the fact that this can cause problems on a deeper institutional level. Developing safeguards practice may have legal effects on IAEA Member States, which means implementing safeguards in the context of the SLC without consent may constitute a sovereignty issue. This means the IAEA should pay extra attention to achieve and maintain consensual support for its actions to avoid an institutional power struggle over the SLC.

Journal Article.  11744 words. 

Subjects: Military and Defence Law ; Public International Law ; Police and Security Services ; Terrorism and National Security Law ; Use of Force, War, Peace and Neutrality

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