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Rafael Grossi was elected by the IAEA Board of Governors. JOE KLAMAR / AFP

He succeeds the Japanese Yukiya Amano. The International Atomic Energy Agency is in charge of controlling Iran's nuclear activities.

Argentina's Rafael Grossi was elected Tuesday at the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency ( IAEA ), two ambassadors accredited to the UN in Vienna announced.

" The IAEA Board of Governors has selected the Argentine candidate R. Grossi for the post of Director General of the IAEA, " Russian Ambassador Mikhail Ulyanov wrote on his Twitter account.

The #IAEA Board of Governors selected Argentine R. Grossi for the position of IAEA Director General.

Mikhail Ulyanov (@Amb_Ulyanov) October 29, 2019

" With Rafael Grossi obtaining a qualified majority on the Board of Governors, the IAEA has taken a decisive step in the election of its Director General, " French Ambassador Xavier Sticker confirmed on the social network.

Regarding the verification of nuclear activities in Iran , Mr. Grossi said he wanted to follow the mandate given by the IAEA member states " in close connection with the parties involved ", adding that the subject was " of utmost importance for any the world .

Waiting for validation

The selection of a new director general is made by a vote of the governors. It is then formally confirmed by the IAEA General Conference. The date of the next meeting of the 171 Member States of the Agency is not yet known.

According to a third diplomatic source, Mr Grossi, aged 58, obtained 24 votes, while Romanian Cornel Feruta, who acted as head of the Agency and was also a candidate, collected 10 votes. Argentinian takes over Japanese Yukiya Amano, who died in July at age 72 while running the UN organization since 2009.

Former Agency employee and Argentine ambassador to international organizations in Vienna since 2013, Rafael Grossi is an expert on nuclear issues. He is also the first representative of South America to lead the IAEA.

He takes the lead as the institution takes on a growing strategic responsibility to Iran.

(with AFP)