Iran calls on IAEA to behave professionally

TEHRAN, Feb. 08 (MNA) – The head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Mohammad Eslami has urged the International Atomic Energy Agency to behave professionally regarding Iran-related issues.

"We especially expect the Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency to maintain professional behavior and not be part of the current of pressure against our country," Eslami told reporters on the sidelines of the cabinet meeting on Wednesday.

Rafael Grossi, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), said on Tuesday that the diplomatic effort to resuscitate the nuclear deal, or the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), “is not at its best point,” but progress is "not impossible".

“I hope to be able to re-set, restore, reinforce that indispensable dialogue,” he said during a discussion at the London-based Chatham House think tank. “Without that, things are going to get worse.”

Grossi further said that in spite of the standoff in the talks, he remained optimistic about progress, Press TV reported.

“I wouldn’t despair in the sense that the JCPOA cannot be revived,” he said.

“I’m not saying yes JCPOA [or] no JCPOA. The important thing is to keep the non-proliferation rule strongly in place, and so we will see,” he said. “The next few weeks and months will be crucial to determine whether there is a possibility.”

Last month, Grossi warned that Iran had enough highly enriched uranium to build “several” nuclear weapons if it chose to do so. “One thing is true: They have amassed enough nuclear material for several nuclear weapons, not one at this point,” he claimed.

Iran has time and again rejected accusations of seeking to develop nuclear weapons. The country is an abiding member of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), has agreed to put certain limits on its nuclear program by signing the JCPOA, and has allowed unprecedented levels of inspections by the IAEA to reassure the world that it is not after nuclear weapons.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Grossi expressed regret about the leakage of confidential information on Iran’s Fordow nuclear facility, saying the agency does not have the means to control and follow up on the issue.

He said the agency has “rigorous measures” to protect classified reports but described controlling the flow of information as “challenging” and “impossible.”

“We are concerned, we prepare these reports for the members (of the Board of Governors), what happens after that can be unfortunate,” he said.

In an interview with Iran’s state TV on Friday, Iran’s nuclear chief warned that the IAEA chief’s “unprofessional and unacceptable” behavior would harm his reputation and that of the agency.

Iran and the IAEA are currently in a dispute triggered by the agency’s Israeli-influenced accusations, which were leveled against Tehran’s peaceful nuclear activities just as the Islamic Republic and other parties to the Iran deal appeared close to an agreement on reviving the JCPOA.

Iran says an agreement on the revival of the nuclear deal hinges on the settlement of Safeguards issues between Tehran and the IAEA, and that without settling those issues, reviving the 2015 deal would make no sense.


News Code 197200


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