Jeffrey LewisBrazil Rebuffs IAEA

The Brazilian government has refused to allow IAEA inspectors to examine the Resende uranium enrichment plant near Rio de Janeiro.

“We feel deeply bothered, almost offended, when suspicions are raised about Brazil,” a senior Brazilian diplomat told the Washington Post.

Brazilian President Luis Ignacio Lula de Silva, as well as the country/’s Science and Technology Minister, have both been forced in recent years to clarify statements that implied Brazil might restart its nuclear weapons program. I think we could do without the feigned indignation from the senior Brazilian diplomat.

Brazil is arguing that visual inspections are unncessary and may compromise proprietary information. This case is a great argument for a proposal by IAEA Director-General Mohamed ElBaradei to place all enrichment and reprocessing facilities used for civilian purposes under international ownership and control.