Publishe Date: 1:25 PM - 4/24/2013 | Print

Envoy: Iran, IAEA to Hold Technical Meeting in May

Politics - Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) agreed to continue their talks on technical issues concerning Tehran's peaceful nuclear program next month, an Iranian envoy announced.

We agreed to meet at the headquarters of Iran's mission to IAEA in the Austrian capital of Vienna on May 15," Iran's Residing Representative at the IAEA Ali Asqar Soltaniyeh said on Tuesday.

Soltaniyeh noted that the IAEA's delegation will be headed by IAEA Deputy Director-General and Head of the Department of Safeguards Herman Nackaerts.
Iran and the IAEA last met in Tehran in mid-January and mid-February.

The IAEA inspectors have conducted numerous inspections of Iran's nuclear facilities but have never found any evidence showing diversion from peaceful purposes in the Iranian nuclear energy program.

The latest report released by the IAEA chief on Iran acknowledges that Tehran is conducting its uranium enrichment activities successfully and under the supervision of the UN nuclear watchdog's inspectors.

Washington and its Western allies accuse Iran of trying to develop nuclear weapons under the cover of a civilian nuclear program, while they have never presented any corroborative evidence to substantiate their allegations. Iran denies the charges and insists that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.

Tehran stresses that the country has always pursued a civilian path to provide power to the growing number of Iranian population, whose fossil fuel would eventually run dry.

Despite the rules enshrined in the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) entitling every member state, including Iran, to the right of uranium enrichment, Tehran is now under four rounds of UN Security Council sanctions and western embargos for turning down West's calls to give up its right of uranium enrichment.

Tehran has dismissed West's demands as politically tainted and illogical, stressing that sanctions and pressures merely consolidate Iranians' national resolve to continue the path.

The Islamic Republic says that it considers its nuclear case closed as it has come clean of IAEA's questions and suspicions about its past nuclear activities.

Political observers believe that the United States has remained at loggerheads with Iran mainly over the independent and home-grown nature of Tehran's nuclear technology, which gives the Islamic Republic the potential to turn into a world power and a role model for the other third-world countries. Washington has laid much pressure on Iran to make it give up the most sensitive and advanced part of the technology, which is uranium enrichment, a process used for producing nuclear fuel for power plants.

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