Differences remain with UN atomic watchdog, says Iran



AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE

Published — Saturday 19 January 2013

Last update 19 January 2013 3:37 am

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

TEHRAN: Iran acknowledged yesterday that it still has differences with the UN atomic watchdog after two days of talks over its disputed nuclear activities, but also said that the negotiations are progressing.
“Some of the differences were solved but it is very complex issue... No agreement has been signed but the negotiations are progressing,” Iran’s International Atomic Energy Agency envoy Ali Asghar Soltanieh said on television.
“We hope that they take our considerations into the document; it is a good opportunity to reach an agreement,” he said of a “structured approach” deal that would see Iran answer allegations of a military dimension to its nuclear drive.
The IAEA conducts regular inspections of Iran’s declared nuclear facilities but also wants access to what it believes are sites where undeclared activities aimed at developing nuclear weapons took place until 2003, and possibly since.
Tehran denies working on or ever having worked on the bomb and says the IAEA’s information is based on faulty foreign intelligence — material that it has not been shown.
Soltanieh’s comments came a day after a team led by IAEA chief inspector Herman Nackaerts wrapped up two days of crunch talks in Tehran — the second round in a month.
“We decided to have more talks,” Soltanieh said after what he called “serious and intensive negotiations.”
“When we agree on everything, we will sign it and we let people know the content of the deal.”
Nackaerts said in Vienna yesterday that “differences remain so we could not finalise the structured approach to resolve the outstanding issues regarding possible military dimensions of Iran’s nuclear programme.” He did not elaborate.
The only agreement was for both sides to meet again in Tehran on Feb. 12.
Soltanieh again dismissed the possibility of the IAEA inspecting the contested Parchin military site, however.
“As we said, until such time as we ink the agreement they would not have access to the sites they want to inspect,” he said.
Iran argues that because no nuclear activities have taken place at Parchin, the IAEA has no business inspecting it.
It was unclear what went wrong this time, but in the past Iran has insisted that the agreement include clauses that could hamper the IAEA’s ability to conduct proper inspections.
This included the IAEA agreeing to “close” an issue for good once it had been covered, even if new information came to light, or the agency being able to inspect a site or a document only once, diplomats said.
Soltanieh said delays in reaching a deal boil down to consenting on “terms and phrases.”
“I have to say that in the past year of discussions we were talking about a two or three page document in which a single term or phrase takes hours to decide on because of political and security repercussions,” he said.
Soltanieh said “the agency cannot enter domains which could infringe upon our national security,” adding: “The talks are ongoing but we are ready to find ways to answer these ambiguities... our cooperation under the NPT (Non-proliferation Treaty) will continue.”
The latest talks came ahead of a new meeting between Iran and the P5+1 powers — the US, China, Russia, Britain, France and Germany.
It had been expected to take place this month but has not yet been arranged, either because Iran was waiting until after the IAEA talks or because there are problems agreeing on an agenda.
This parallel effort is focused more on Iran’s current activities, in particular uranium enrichment, a process that can be used for peaceful purposes but also for creating the core of a nuclear bomb.
At their last meeting in Moscow in June, Tehran rejected P5+1 calls for it to scale back its enrichment activities, while asking for relief from sanctions that in 2012 began to bite.
Soltanieh told Iran’s Arabic-language Al-Alam on Friday that “we will not stop enrichment for even a moment... it is our undeniable right to do so.”
FROM: AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: A Saudi citizen was killed in shelling fired across the border from Yemen into the southwest of Saudi Arabia on Sunday, local media reported.A shell fell on a house around dawn in Najran province, civil defense department spokesman Ali bin Om...
JEDDAH: Female voters in Al-Ahsa have urged the authorities handling the municipal elections to drop the condition of presenting the national identity card while enrolling themselves in the voters’ list. Some women in Madinah too have appealed for mo...
JEDDAH: After the recent incident of a rat eating from a bowl at a well-known food outlet in a Jeddah mall came to light, residents have called for food hygiene ratings of restaurants and roadside eateries across the city.Although the municipality wo...
JEDDAH: A muezzin (one who recites the Adhaan) of a Riyadh mosque recently sprung a surprise in the Austrian tourist town of Zell am See by his Adhaan after taking permission from members of a musical band.Social media is abuzz with the news and vide...
RIYADH: A Sri Lankan national, who works as a cleaner in the Kingdom, was commended and rewarded by the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTNH) for returning a bag containing gold to its owner.“Prince Sultan bin Salman, president o...
RIYADH: Bangladesh State Minister for Foreign Affairs Mohammed Shahriar Alam arrived in Jeddah on Sunday to meet with his Saudi counterpart Nizar Madani on Monday.On arrival at the royal terminal, the minister was received by Director General of the...
RIYADH: A report of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage predicts the rate of growth in job opportunities in the country's tourism sector between 2010 and 2020 will be 10 percent a year as compared to a global growth rate of 2.5 per...
JEDDAH: Two million meningitis vaccines have been distributed among health centers in 20 governorates and provinces across the Kingdom for domestic Haj pilgrims.It is mandatory for all pilgrims to be vaccinated against meningitis and for those coming...
JEDDAH: The Makkah governorate has announced four new road projects linking Makkah and Jeddah. The new roads will facilitate smoother and faster travel between the cities.An estimated 35 million people will benefit from the projects, which will inclu...
JEDDAH: A major disaster is waiting to happen in the fish market of Madinah because of the callous attitude of traders toward handling of gas cylinders. A visit to the market presents a dreadful picture of cylinders kept on top of each other without...
JEDDAH: Information and Culture Minister Adel Al-Toraifi has approved the appointment of Khalid Bo-Ali as editor in chief of the Eastern Province-based Alsharq Arabic newspaper. He was nominated for the post by the board of directors of the newspaper...
JEDDAH: Jamil Farsi, head of the Gold and Jewelry Committee at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI), says he expects 3,000 job opportunities to be created for Saudi women in the jewelry design and gold sector across the Kingdom, with ab...
JEDDAH: More than 50 visually challenged people successfully performed Umrah with the help of the Ebsar Foundation for the Visually Impaired and the Ambassadors of Volunteers organization under their program “Umrah for the visually impaired,” which w...
JEDDAH: Although the Ministry of Labor is opening its doors to receive complaints from private sector employees, many Saudi females employed in cosmetic and perfume shops in Madinah are not making complaints about being overworked due to fear of losi...
JEDDAH: Health Minister Dr. Khaled Al-Falih is set to increase the number of beds in all private sector hospitals, as per new implementation regulations adopted this year.The move will help address the problem of delays in public sector projects, as...

Stay Connected

Facebook