Iran defends refusal to let in U.N. nuclear expert

Iran defends refusal to let in U.N. nuclear expert

Iran has dismissed criticism by the International Atomic Energy Agency of its refusal earlier this year to let one IAEA expert into the country as part of a team investigating allegations of nuclear weapons research, Reuters reported Oct. 8.

Tehran said it had a sovereign right to decide who to admit onto its territory. But its failure to issue a visa to an IAEA official, who diplomatic sources said was probably a Western atomic bomb expert, may deepen longstanding Western suspicions that it is stonewalling the U.N. agency's inquiry.

The IAEA said last month that Iran had not issued a visa for one member of a team that visited Tehran on Aug. 31 to try to advance the investigation into what the U.N. agency calls the possible military dimensions of the country's nuclear program.

It was the third time the person, whom the U.N. agency did not identify, had been unable to obtain an entry permit. It was unclear whether this official had received one to join an IAEA delegation holding talks in the Iranian capital this week.

It is important, the IAEA said in a Sept. 5 report on Iran's nuclear program, that "any staff member identified by the agency with the requisite expertise is able to participate in the agency's technical activities".

But, in a statement distributed to IAEA member states this week, Iran said that granting visas was "our sovereign national right and we will issue it when we deem it appropriate".

The IAEA has for years been trying to get to the bottom of allegations that Iran has worked on designing a nuclear bomb.

Iran says its nuclear activity is a peaceful, but suspicions in the West that the civil nuclear program is a front for weapons development have led to punishing economic sanctions, which Tehran hopes will be lifted if ongoing negotiations with world powers succeed in ending the standoff.

IAEA member states have the right to deny access to individual inspectors proposed by the U.N. agency, and Iran has for several years blocked staff from some Western nations, including the United States, to check its nuclear sites.

A separate, high-level IAEA team in charge of the Iran inquiry - which at least on some occasions has included officials from France, the United States and Britain - has held several meetings in Tehran since early 2012, including one this week.

Iran said it had provided visas on time to three new members of the IAEA team in recent months.

NUCLEAR "AMBIGUITIES"

Western officials say Iran needs to cooperate with the IAEA inquiry if it wants to reach a breakthrough diplomatic settlement with world powers.

Last month's IAEA report said Iran had failed to answer questions about possible military dimensions of its nuclear program by an agreed Aug. 25 deadline, in a possible setback for the farther-reaching diplomacy between Iran and the United States, France, Germany, Britain, China and Russia.

Iran rejects the accusations as baseless. But it has promised, since relative pragmatist Hassan Rouhani was elected president last year on a platform to end its international isolation, to work with the IAEA to clear up the suspicions.

"We continue to cooperate with the IAEA on some of the ambiguities in order to clarify and resolve them," said the Iranian communique to IAEA member countries, which was dated Sept. 19 but only posted on the IAEA's website this week.

While the powers seek to limit the size of Iran's future nuclear program - and thereby extend the time it would need for any attempt to accumulate fissile material for a weapon - the IAEA is investigating purported research and experiments in the past that could be applied to making the bomb itself.

Underlining its determination to press ahead with efforts to modernize its nuclear capacity - an area of concern for the United States and its allies, the Iranian statement said it installed a new, advanced centrifuge, the IR-8, last year in a research and development facility at its Natanz enrichment plant. Centrifuges refine uranium, a nuclear fuel which can have both civilian and military applications.

It said the IR-8 was a "complete new centrifuge" and criticized the IAEA for calling it a "casing" in its reports. If Iran were to successfully replace its current, breakdown-prone IR-1 model, it could amass potential bomb material much faster.

Iranian Energy Exchange announces products to be on sale on January 25
Iranian Energy Exchange announces products to be on sale on January 25
Bahar Azadi gold coin price rebounds in Iran
Bahar Azadi gold coin price rebounds in Iran
Implementation of drilling operations continue in Iran's oil fields
Implementation of drilling operations continue in Iran's oil fields
Loading Bars
Latest
Deutsche Bank starts probe in relation to engagement with some clients
5 terrorists killed in NW Pakistan
Saudi sovereign fund to double assets in next five years to $1.07 trillion - Crown Prince
Azerbaijan completes repair and construction work on roads of Samukh district
Bahar Azadi gold coin price rebounds in Iran
Iranian Energy Exchange announces products to be on sale on January 25
Weekly review of events in agricultural sector of Azerbaijan
Khazar Consortium opens tender for purchase of cartridges, toners
Georgian exports of knitwear to Turkey decreases
Turkmenistan’s State Concern to sign contract with Chinese company for drilling pipes purchase
Israeli embassy welcomes scheduled resumption of flights to Georgia
Bazargan border reopened after unprecedented snow
Cobalt becomes most produced car in Uzbekistan last year
Turkey registers more than 5 200 new coronavirus cases
Mexican authorities recover 19 bodies, some shot and burned, in remote area
Israel bans international flights to curb coronavirus spread
Bulk of construction work completed in Uzbekistan falls on private sector
Turkey to receive 6.5 million doses of China's vaccine next week
Dutch police arrest alleged Asian drug syndicate kingpin
Georgia reports 546 coronavirus cases, 1 456 recoveries, 17 deaths
Germany ready to assist Kyrgyzstan in implementing green economy policies
President Rouhani: Iran's economic ties entering new phase
UK detects 77 cases of South African COVID variant, nine of Brazilian
Azerbaijan shows footage from Ashaghi Aybasanli village of Fuzuli district (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Implementation of drilling operations continue in Iran's oil fields
China sees fall in new COVID-19 cases amid strict local lockdowns
Iran's NIDC declares number of drilled oil & gas wells
Iran unveils details of exports via Bilasuvar border checkpoint
Uzbekistan to launch charter flights from Russia to Tashkent
Chinese smartphone maker discloses amount invested in opening factories in Turkey
Buy/sell operations at Iran Mercantile Exchange revealed
Georgia's import of tubes, pipes, hollow profiles from Turkey increases
Body of Azerbaijani citizen killed on Turkish ship to be sent to his homeland soon - Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry
Israel to start COVID-19 vaccination for high school students
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for January 24
Azerbaijan confirms 568 more COVID-19 recoveries
Portugal votes for new president at height of pandemic
Expert talks promoting import of electric and hybrid vehicles to Azerbaijan
Turkmennebit opens tender for purchase of various equipment
Azerbaijan shows footage from Jomerd village of Kalbajar district (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Sales of goods at Iran Mercantile Exchange spike
Iran reveals amount of loans issued to manufacturing companies
Georgia increases export of marine mammals, fish fats, oils and their fractions to Turkey
S&P talks about Azerbaijan's GDP growth in 2022-2024
Turkey set to receive second vaccine shipment from China soon
Russia records over 21,100 daily coronavirus cases
Weekly review of Azerbaijani precious metals market
Kazakhstan's exports volume to Georgia increases multifold
Azerbaijan's strategic foreign exchange reserves increase year on year
Iran announces volume of sprat caught in Caspian Sea
Azerbaijan shares footage from Ashaghi Veysalli village of Fuzuli district (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Consumption of steel products in Iran increases
3 injured as blast hits vehicle in Kabul
Weekly review of Azerbaijani currency market
Georgia reveals data on exports of semi-finished products of iron or non-alloy steel to Turkey
Iranian companies join UN CTCN
Kazakhstan’s daily COVID-19 case count stands at 1,584
Weekly review of main events in Azerbaijan's transport sector
UK to quarantine visitors from nations with high COVID-19 risk
China rescues first person from Shandong gold mine: state media
Over 2 mln coronavirus cases registered in Colombia
Israel reports 4,550 new COVID-19 cases, 593,578 in total
Iran's Marun Oil & Gas Production Company manufactures certain equipment
Iran to begin COVID-19 vaccinations in coming weeks: President Rouhani
France registers 23,924 new COVID-19 cases, 230 deaths in one day
Turkmenenergo to sign new contracts with foreign companies
7.0-magnitude quake hits South Shetland Islands: CENC
Turkey reports 5,856 new COVID-19 cases, 2,424,328 in total
After first phone call, UK PM Johnson looks forward to working with Biden
UK records another 33,552 coronavirus cases, 1,348 deaths
WHO reports over 600,000 new daily cases of COVID-19
Azerbaijani, Turkish FMs discuss pirate attack on ship
Top Spanish general resigns over allegations of vaccination queue-jumping
Pirates hijack Turkish ship off coast of Guinea, one person killed
BMB Trade Group and Uzbek Saffron Research Center discuss saffron cultivation and processing
Trend TV shares video report from plundered during Armenian occupation Azerbaijani Zangilan
Belarus, Kazakhstan seek closer cooperation in exchange trade
Management of Azerbaijan's State Oil Company being improved - Decree
New staff of Azerbaijani SOCAR's Supervisory Board approved
Georgia's external merchandise trade down 14.8% in 2020
Turkey halts flights from Brazil due to new COVID-19 variant
Gas pressure in Iran's South Pars gas field projected to decrease
Iran's gas processing potential to increase
Portugal holds presidential election as COVID-19 cases spiral
Italy reports 488 coronavirus deaths and 13,331 new cases
Italy to rethink vaccine roll out if supply problems persist
US broadcaster, journalist Larry King dies aged 87
Russia signs deal with Turkey on vaccine production
Azerbaijani MoD issues footage from Kalbajar district's Gamishli village (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Manat exchange rate against dollar to remain unchanged - Standard & Poor's
Bahar Azadi gold coin price again falling in Iran
Azerbaijan considering issues of regional schools damaged during Karabakh War
Iranian Energy Exchange announces products to be on sale on January 24
State subsidy to increase from 10 to 15 GEL per 50 kg of wheat flour in Georgia
Goods transit via Iran's Bileh Savar on rise
Tax authorities of Kyrgyzstan, Russia discuss launch of joint project
Japan's COVID-19 death toll exceeds 5,000 as total cases surpass 360,000
Indian gov't confirms outbreak of bird flu
Azerbaijani president expresses condolences to Ukranian counterpart
Bulgaria to ease some COVID-19 rules, restaurants closed for now
All news