Statement on the International Atomic Energy Agency Order of Malta - Permanent Observer Mission


Statement on the International Atomic Energy Agency

By H. E. Ambassador Günther A. Granser

Permanent Observer to the UN and IAEA
at the 54th General Conference of the International Atomic Energy Agency 

Vienna, 20 – 24 September 2010

* Check against delivery *

President, Director General, Distinguished Delegates,

It is a pleasure to congratulate you on your election as President of the General Conference. I would like to assure you, the members of the Bureau and the Secretariat, of the full support of the Delegation of the Sovereign Order of Malta.

The Sovereign Order of Malta founded over 950 years ago and being with its sovereign status, the oldest humanitarian hospitaller entity, has full bilateral relations with exchange of ambassadors with 104 countries also Member States of the Agency, official relations with 6 countries, official representations and permanent observer status to the United Nations, official relations at ambassador level with the European Union and numerous international organizations, providing a unique diplomatic humanitarian network which is booth a demonstration of is sovereignty and an operational instrument for its humanitarian activities. In many ways, it is through its hospitals and through its continuing health care initiatives in countries and among communities in every corner of the world that the Order is able to make the longest lasting contribution to the wellbeing of mankind in helping the sick and the disadvantaged whichever race, sex and religion they are.

Humanity is faced with critical challenges related to maintaining and enhancing its continued prosperity within the context of ever increasing demands being placed on sustainable food production, health and security. Of critical importance is the availability and use of energy resources that would foster sustainable development and decrease greenhouse gas emissions. In this regard the Agency is well placed to assist Member States in meeting these challenges.

The human race is a single family working together in true communion. This recognition gives rise to the need to reinvigorate that approach to multilateralism marked by dialogue and an honest and responsible cooperation on the part of all members of the international community. Each State is called to pursue the development and well-being of all nations and peoples and not national power, whether economic or military. The essential point of reference is, in fact, the human person, with his or her dignity and with his or her fundamental rights.


The overwhelming characteristic that must pervade the work done by the Agency in the three areas of its mandate, technology, safety and verification, should always be to unite and associate, to work together for safety and security, to work together for disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation and of particular interest for the Order, to work together to use peaceful and safe nuclear technology, which respects the environment and is always mindful of the most disadvantaged populations.

Thus, a common commitment to peace and security can lead not only to an equitable distribution of the resources of the earth, but above all, to the building of a “social and international order in which rights and freedoms of all human persons can be fully realized” (Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 28).


There are many positive fruits to be earned from the use of nuclear technology in such vital fields for human beings as food security and, most important, in medicine. The work the IAEA is carrying out through “Nuclear Applications” and in particular with the “Programme of Action for Cancer Therapy”, (PACT) cannot but receive ample support from the Order of Malta.

In fact joint efforts are undertaken for a collaborative arrangement under discussion with the Agency to focus in developing comprehensive human resources through capacity building activities and action plans for low and middle-resources countries. In particular the facilitation of training measures in nuclear medicine and the promotion of related fellowships and provision of experts in support of joint initiatives in cancer management are already in progress. I can emphasize that the Order has already in place a number of cooperation agreements with States, international organizations such as FAO, IOM, UNHCR and even the European Commission.

In concluding, Mr. President, the Order sees in the activities of the Agency an example of how issues and conflicts concerning the world community can be subject to common regulation when we all work together.

Thank you, President