Iran says won't accept demands beyond nuclear deal as IAEA head visits

Topics Iran | nuclear deal

Iran

Iran won't accept any additional demands beyond its commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal, the country's top nuclear official declared Tuesday as the chief of the UN nuclear watchdog made his first visit to Iran.

Rafael Grossi, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency arrived in Iran on Monday to press for access to sites where the Islamic Republic is suspected of having stored or used undeclared nuclear material.

Grossi took over the IAEA after the sudden death of its late director-general Yukiya Amano last year.

Grossi's visit comes as the US is pushing to snapback UN sanctions on Iran for allegedly violating the nuclear deal with world powers.

The IAEA repeatedly found Iran in compliance with the agreement until last year, when Tehran began breaking the deal's limits on nuclear enrichment in response to heavy US sanctions following President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrawing America from the accord.

Iran now no longer follows any of its limits, but continues to allow IAEA inspectors and surveillance at nuclear sites in the country.

Ali Akbar Salehi, the head of the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran, spoke during a joint press conference in Tehran with Grossi.

Definitely Iran will not accept demands beyond (its) nuclear commitments. We do act based on our own national interests, Salehi said, according to the state-run IRNA news agency.

Grossi faced a series of questions from local Iranian journalists implicitly criticising the IAEA, especially over him pushing Iran for access to possible nuclear sites thought to be from the early 2000s, before Iran signed the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

Iran maintains IAEA inspectors have no legal basis to inspect the sites.

We have encountered a couple of points we need still to find agreement, he said, calling IAEA's relations with Iran intense.

We have, with Iran, a large number of questions which we are working together, Grossi said.

This is going to continue. However, Salehi also declared a new chapter" has begun between Iran and the IAEA, saying he had constructive talks with Grossi.

He said both sides are working on a joint statement about their further cooperation.

On Sunday, Iran said the IAEA was seeking access and inspection at two places near the capital, Tehran, and the central Iranian city of Isfahan.

Last year, the UN agency said that of the two sites that Iran has blocked access to, one was partially demolished in 2004. At the other, the agency said it observed activities consistent with efforts to sanitize the facility from July 2019 onward.

A third site, the agency said, had undergone extensive sanitisation and leveling in 2003 and 2004 and there would be no verification value in inspecting it.


(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


Dear Reader,


Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.

We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel