Saturday, February 13, 2010

Others Malaysian voted chairman of IAEA Board of Governors

Malaysian envoy, Muhammad Shahrul Ikram Yaakob

Sat, 13 Feb 2010  |  PressTV

The Malaysian ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Muhammad Shahrul Ikram Yaakob, has been elected as the new chairman of the body's 35-member Board of Governors.

Yaakob was elected after his fellow countryman, Mohd Arshad bin Manzoor Hussain — who had originally been voted to chair the board in the current period but was eventually recalled by Kuala Lumpur in December 2009.

Over the past few months, reports have been circulating that Arshad had been in fact sacked for supporting Iran's nuclear program in an IAEA vote.

The allegations, however, have been dismissed out of hand by the Malaysian Foreign Ministry.

"The ambassador's term is up in March and so it will not be renewed and we are hoping to replace him with another Malaysian envoy," AFP quoted the country's Foreign Minister Anifah Aman as saying on Saturday.

"Mohammad Arshad's contract was extended upon his retirement and that extension is ending in March so he should bow out gracefully to let younger diplomats have a chance to serve the country in international organizations," he added.

The Board of Governors is one of the two policy making bodies of the IAEA. The board consists of 13 members designated by the outgoing board and 22 members elected by the General Conference — which is the highest policymaking body of the IAEA.

The chairmanship of the IAEA Board of Governors routinely rotates between different geographical regions.