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ISLAMABAD: The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General, Rafael Mariano Grossi, has reiterated the agency’s continued and enhanced cooperation with Pakistan, especially in its efforts to provide the latest treatment facilities to cancer patients.

The IAEA director general arrived on a two-day visit to Pakistan on Wednesday to exchange views with Pakistani officials and relevant authorities.

While speaking at the inauguration ceremony of the latest Cyberknife facility at Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission’s flagship cancer-care hospital – Nuclear Medicine, Oncology and Radiotherapy Institute – the IAEA Director General, Rafael Mariano Grossi, expressed the hope that the newly-inaugurated Cyberknife facility will multiply theuropic capacities in Pakistan to treat the cancer patients.

He said this hospital in Pakistan is equipped with the latest technology and has the potential to even extend this facility to other countries.

In a series of tweets after arriving on a two-day visit to Islamabad, Grossi stated: “Visiting the Pakistan Nuclear Medicine Oncology and Radiotherapy Institute, an important IAEA’s partner and a perfect example of peaceful nuclear uses. Proud to inaugurate Cyberknife, a CancerCare4All milestone. Pakistan will support its neighbours as a regional centre in Rays of Hope.”

He stated that the opportunities for the peaceful use of nuclear science in Pakistan are plentiful from combating the global climate crisis to fighting cancer.

In another tweet, he stated that the Pakistan Institute of Nuclear Science and Technology and IAEA have long partnered in improving healthcare, but also in the peaceful application of nuclear science in other fields such as nutrition and water analysis, to the benefit of Pakistan and the rest of the region.

Talking about nuclear security, the IAEA DG said that nuclear security is a crucial element within the continued cooperation between Pakistan and the IAEA. “I was impressed by the high standard of the Pakistan Centre of Excellence in Nuclear Security and I look forward to enhancing our excellent collaboration,” he added.

“Nuclear accounts for almost a quarter of Pakistan’s low-carbon electricity, much of it from Chashma Nuclear Power Plant. Pleased to visit the plant today and inaugurate its spent fuel dry storage facility, highlighting the importance of managing spent fuel safely and securely,” he said after visiting the plant.

The IAEA’s director general also held a meeting with Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari and exchanged views on issues of mutual interest.

According to a Foreign Office statement, the foreign minister emphasized the importance of using atomic energy in health, agriculture, industry, and power sectors.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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