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UN nuclear agency laments lack of progress during Iran visit

IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano.
IAEA/D. Calma
IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano.

UN nuclear agency laments lack of progress during Iran visit

The United Nations atomic energy watchdog has voiced disappointment at the lack of progress made during a two-day visit to Iran aimed at clarifying possible military dimensions to the country’s nuclear programme.

An expert team from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) held talks with Iranian officials on 20 and 21 February, following previous discussions at the end of last month.

“We engaged in a constructive spirit, but no agreement was reached,” IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano stated in a news release.

The agency had requested access to the military site at Parchin during both the first and second round of discussions. However, Iran did not grant permission for this visit to take place.

“It is disappointing that Iran did not accept our request to visit Parchin during the first or second meetings,” said Mr. Amano.

In addition, “intensive” efforts were made to reach agreement on a document facilitating the clarification of unresolved issues in connection with Iran’s nuclear programme, particularly those relating to possible military dimensions.

“Unfortunately, agreement was not reached on this document,” stated the agency.

This week’s visit was aimed at resolving all outstanding issues regarding Iran’s nuclear programme, which Tehran says is for the peaceful purpose of providing energy, but some countries contend is for the purpose of developing nuclear weapons.