Experts: Diplomacy and cooperation with IAEA can bring Iran out crisis

Politics Materials 12 June 2010 12:20 (UTC +04:00)
The only way for Iran to resolve this crisis is the continuation of diplomatic negotiations and cooperation with the IAEA, because at the moment Iran is not able to adequately confront the West, experts said.
Experts: Diplomacy and cooperation with IAEA can bring Iran out crisis

Azerbaijan, Baku, June 12 / Trend T. Konyayeva /

The only way for Iran to resolve this crisis is the continuation of diplomatic negotiations and cooperation with the IAEA, because at the moment Iran is not able to adequately confront the West, experts said.

"The only way for Iran is to increase cooperation with the IAEA. It has no other way," professor at the University of Glasgow," Reza Taghizadeh, told Trend over phone.

The Iranian Foreign Ministry representative Mehmanparast Ramin said June 10 that the new resolution, adopted by the UN Security Council June 9 and providing for new sanctions against Iran, will complicate the dialogue between Tehran and the West over Iran's nuclear program. Iran's parliament will put the draft to limit cooperation with IAEA to the vote June 13.

As for Iran's response to the new resolution, Taghizadeh thinks that Iran can only cancel the tripartite agreement on the exchange of uranium.

Iran, Turkey and Brazil reached a trilateral agreement on the exchange of uranium May 17. The foreign ministers of these countries have signed a draft agreement on the exchange of Tehran's existing low-enriched-uranium (up to 3.5 percent) for highly-enriched-fuel (up to 20 percent) for Tehran's research reactor. According to the document, the exchange will be implemented on Turkish territory. Iran is ready to deliver 1,2 tons of low enriched uranium to Turkey under the agreement to get 120 kilograms of nuclear fuel.

However, the agreement had no significance, as it was previously rejected by the United States, Russia and France," Taghizadeh said.

Washington, Moscow and Paris have rejected Iran's proposal for the exchange of enriched uranium for nuclear fuel for the reactor in Tehran on the eve of voting in the UN Security Council on a new resolution. The IAEA confirmed that it got the responses of three members of the UN Security Council and sent them to Tehran.

Joshua Landis, Director Center for Middle East Studies University of Oklahoma, agrees with Tagizadeh on this issue, saying that the Turkish-Brazil agreement is dead.

According to Kenneth Timmerman, President of Foundation for Democracy in Iran, the Turkey-Brazil agreement was a non-starter from the very beginning, since it assumed that France would provide the 20% enriched fuel that Iran was seeking in exchange for half of its low-enriched uranium (LEU).

"The French have told me that they were never consulted on this, and at any rate, would never have agreed even if they had been consulted, since the proposal now only involves roughly half of Iran's known LEU, whereas the whole point of the Western offer last October was to remove all of Iran's declared LEU stockpiles from Iran in exchange for fuel rods for the Tehran research reactor that would be placed under constant IAEA supervision," Timmerman told Trend via e-mail.

Taghizadeh also doubted that as a retaliatory step, Iran can leave the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), because such action will lead Iran to war.

NPT is a multilateral international document under which the signatory country has the right to enrich uranium to use it as fuel for civilian atomic energy. Such countries must remain under IAEA supervision. The parties to the treaty are almost all independent countries of the world, except Israel, India, Pakistan and Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

"Iran causes serious suspicions among the world community, therefore it can not give an opportunity to further aggravate the situation, " he said.

Iranian opponents would be gratified if Iran withdraws from the NPT because it would put Iran even further outside of international consensus, Landis said.

Iran has limited means for responding to the U.S sponsored sanctions, U.S expert said.

"It can do nothing except what it has already been doing, which is to evade them as best as possible with shell corporations and stealth," Landis told Trend via e-mail.

All the same, we don not know how much these new sanctions will really hurt Iran or how vigorously countries such as China and Russia will follow them, Landis said.

Russia and China have previously opposed the introduction of new tough measures against Iran, and urged a diplomatic solution. They joined the United States, Great Britain, France and Germany in their support for the IAEA resolution, insisting, however, to conduct a strategy of "dual path" towards Iran, involving the combination of sanctions and negotiations.

"We must also see how Iran's neighbors, such as the UAR, Turkey and India will follow Washington's lead in placing the squeeze on Iran. It is clear that they are not happy with the sanctions," he said.

Iran will continue to defy the international community, Timmerman believes.

"The  latest round of UN sanctions are seriously flawed because they contain no enforcement mechanism, and because they do nothing to restrict Iran's access  to international capital for its oil and gas industry," he said.

According to Timmerman, new sanctions will reinforce the impression prevalent among the regime leadership in Tehran that the United States has become a feckless power, unwilling to take any serious action to halt their nuclear weapons program.

Professor at Tehran University Pirooz Mojtahedzadeh thinks that Iran has a definite right to respond negatively to new sanctions, because there are countries that support Iran's nuclear program.

"The recent strong demand of NPT member-countries to Israel to accede it to the Treaty and admission of IAEA inspectors to the Israeli nuclear facilities has enabled Iran to increase pressure on Israel," Urosevic Research Foundation of London chairman Mojtahedzadeh told Trend over phone from Tehran.

Iran can demonstrate the West its reaction and exert pressure, but within the international cooperation and diplomacy.

"The most acceptable and profitable way out of this situation for Iran is to continue negotiations with the IAEA and the West. The government must not allow realizing of the project to limit cooperation with IAEA. It should find diplomatic solutions to the problem," he said.

D. Khatinoglu contributed to the article.