Iran, IAEA continue interaction despite standing differences on technical issues: Iranian envoy

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
This file photo shows the interior of the Natanz nuclear facility in central Iran.

Iran’s representative to the international organizations in Vienna says the country’s interaction with the UN nuclear watchdog will continue despite differences on technical issues. 

“Despite our [standing] technical differences with the [International Atomic Energy] Agency (IAEA), interaction between the two sides continue in this area with the aim of final resolution of the issues,” Mohammad Reza Ghaebi said on Wednesday.

He, therefore, urged IAEA member states against issuing “hasty or politically-motivated” remarks concerning the status of cooperation between the Islamic Republic and the nuclear agency.

The official was apparently referring to the United States and its Western allies’ habit of coming up with unfounded accusations concerning the quality of the bilateral cooperation. Tehran routinely refutes the allegations, citing technical facts to the contrary and reasserting its constant intention of working transparently with the international body.

Ghaebi cited the agency’s recent quarterly report, in which it has affirmed conducting its routine regulatory checks of Iran’s nuclear energy program.

The report cites only one instance of difference arising from Iran’s inability to allow the agency access to one location owing to underway legal and security investigation into a “terrorist action” targeting the facility, he said.

The Islamic Republic’s nuclear facilities and scientists have come under repeated, and often deadly, terrorist attacks. The Israeli regime has either admitted to conducting the incidents or is the prime suspect in all of them.

Iran has asked the agency to help it complete the investigations, the official reminded.

He also noted that the IAEA report has verified Iran’s enrichment of uranium up to 60 percent in purity, beyond the level enshrined in the country’s 2015 nuclear deal with world countries, noting that Tehran has already notified the agency of the move.

Iran’s decision to go beyond the specified level fits well within the agreement, which is officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

The deal entitles member states to take remedial steps in case of other parties’ non-compliance.

The Islamic Republic initiated its countermeasures in 2019, a year after the US left the deal and returned its illegal sanctions against the country.

Based on the IAEA report, the volume of Iran’s enriched uranium up to various levels wee estimated at 2,489.7 kilograms as of November 6.

According to Ghaebi, IAEA’s Director General Rafael Grossi has accepted an invite by the Islamic Republic to visit the country for high-level meetings, including with Foreign Minister Amir-Abdollahian, next week.


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