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Argentine diplomat Grossi sworn in as new chief of UN’s nuclear watchdog IAEA

Argentine diplomat Grossi sworn in as new chief of UN’s nuclear watchdog IAEA

Veteran Argentine diplomat Rafael Grossi was sworn in on Monday as the new director-general of the UN’s nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Grossi had been serving as Argentina’s ambassador to the IAEA and is the agency’s first leader from Latin America.

He has previously held high-level posts at the agency between 2010 and 2013, bringing him into contact with Iranian officials at a time when international negotiations over Tehran’s nuclear activities were intensifying.

Grossi will be taking over from Yukiya Amano, who died in July at the age of 72, having held the post since 2009. While the US is thought to have lobbied in his favor, diplomats say Grossi has stressed his belief in the importance of the agency’s impartiality, AFP reported. According to them, Grossi is expected to bring “a lot of energy and innovation” to the post, with a particular focus on pushing gender parity within the agency.

The IAEA is charged with monitoring the implementation of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which has increasingly appeared to be in danger of imminent collapse.