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To: DoctorZIn
September 23, 2003
Iran to Scale Back Cooperation With U.N.
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -

Iran remains willing to negotiate on the U.N. nuclear agency's demand for unfettered access for its inspectors but will scale back its cooperation with the watchdog in the meantime, Iran's representative to the agency said Tuesday.

Ali Akbar Salehi had announced on Monday that Iran would cut back its cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency in response to the agency's Oct. 31 deadline for Tehran to prove its atomic programs are peaceful. Tehran charged the move was politically motivated.

Diplomats had said the Iranian decision did not bode well for efforts to resolve the nuclear dispute, but Salehi on Tuesday said his comments were being misinterpreted by the diplomats.

"We have decided to fulfill our obligations under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and not beyond that," Ali Akbar Salehi, Iran's representative to IAEA, told The Associated Press.

"It doesn't mean that we are rejecting the additional protocol or are not prepared to talk on that," Salehi said. The additional protocol would provide IAEA inspectors with unrestricted access of any site they wished to visit in Iran.

Salehi seems to be saying that Iran's latest position is to confine its co-operation with the IAEA to the letter of existing agreements - under which environment sampling at the Kalay-e-Electric Co. in west Tehran is not mandatory - while at the same time negotiating its acceptance of the additional protocol.

The United States has accused Iran of running a clandestine nuclear weapons program and wants the IAEA to declare Tehran in violation of the treaty. Tehran insists its nuclear programs are designed only to generate electricity.

In Vienna Tuesday, a spokesman for the IAEA, Mark Gwozdecky, said the body had heard "nothing official from the Iranian government."

"We've put everything in place to make it possible for Iran to comply with the board of governors resolution," Gwozdecky said, referring to the deadline. "We hope that Iran will do its part in providing the accelerated cooperation that will be necessary for us to resolve the outstanding questions around the nuclear programs."

In August, Iran allowed inspectors to visit Kalay, a site it deemed non-nuclear, after they were turned away two months before when they came to take environmental samples. Iran allegedly had tested centrifuges, which are used to process uranium, at the site.

Iran has said repeatedly it would agree to unfettered inspections if it is granted access to advanced nuclear technology as provided for under the nonproliferation treaty. Tehran says Washington is keeping Iran from getting that technology.
8 posted on 09/23/2003 4:44:35 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: DoctorZIn
UN Steps Up Iran Nuclear Probe Ahead of Deadline
Tue September 23, 2003
By Louis Charbonneau
VIENNA (Reuters) - The United Nations nuclear watchdog said on Tuesday it was stepping up inspections in Iran ahead of an October 31 deadline for Tehran to enable the U.N. to verify it has no secret atomic weapons program.

After strong lobbying by the United States for action, the governing board of the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on September 12 set the deadline and called on Tehran to suspend all uranium-enrichment activities.

Washington, which branded Iran a member of an "axis of evil" with North Korea and pre-war Iraq, believes Iran's enrichment plants may be used to purify uranium for use in a nuclear bomb.

Iran denies this allegation and insists its nuclear ambitions are limited to generating electricity.

IAEA spokeswoman Melissa Fleming said the agency would send teams of experts to Tehran on Friday for inspections and face-to-face talks with Iranian officials to clear up the IAEA's many outstanding questions about Iran's nuclear program.

"We have a detailed list of requirements covering all of the areas outlined in our reports (on Iran) -- including uranium conversion and uranium enrichment," Fleming said.

The IAEA recently found weapons-grade enriched uranium in Iran and is investigating Tehran's explanation that it came from contaminated machinery purchased abroad.

"October will be a period of very intensive inspections and talks in Iran," she said. "To do this, accelerated cooperation is essential and here the ball is in Iran's court."

Fleming said it was important that Iran gives the IAEA everything it needs to answer the agency's unanswered questions so that the November report to the IAEA board "fully addresses all of the outstanding issues and unanswered questions."

If the IAEA still has unanswered questions about Iran's nuclear program in November, diplomats said Washington and the European Union would push to report Tehran to the U.N. Security Council for violating its IAEA nuclear safeguards obligations.

The Security Council could impose economic sanctions.

Fleming said the agency had received no official word on comments by Iran's ambassador to the IAEA, Ali Akbar Salehi, who was quoted by Iranian state television as saying Tehran would cut cooperation with the U.N. to the minimum required under its IAEA Safeguards Agreement.

"We've just read about this in the media," she said. "We haven't heard anything that would stop us from moving forward with this important phase of our investigations.";jsessionid=5IONJKC1KGK5CCRBAE0CFFA?type=worldNews&storyID=3490903
9 posted on 09/23/2003 5:17:25 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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