US to end campaign to replace UN nuclear chief Kate Heneroty at 7:28 AM ET
[JURIST] The US will end its lone opposition to Mohamed ElBaradei [Wikipedia profile], Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency [IAEA official website] Wednesday in exchange for concessions involving Iran and the fight against nuclear arms proliferation. ElBaradei is arriving in Washington to meet with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and new Undersecretary of State for Arms Control Robert Joseph [State Dept. profile], who is replacing John Bolton, likely to be confirmed soon [JURIST report] as US UN ambassador. The Bush administration had opposed a third term for the Egyptian diplomat, arguing that UN officials should serve only 2 terms, but UN officials and others believe US opposition stemmed from ElBaradei's refusal to accept suggestions that Saddam Hussein's Iraq was operating a nuclear weapons program and his disinclination to report Iran to the UN Security Council [JURIST report] for alleged nuclear proliferation violations. The IAEA's 35-nation board of governors begins its quarterly meeting Monday, at which time ElBaradei's re-appointment is expected to be confirmed. Reuters has more.
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