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Iran: Ayatollah Khamenei’s ban on nuclear weapons binding
Question of the Day
“If there are any ambiguities or concerns, we are ready to clear these ambiguities. This can be done under a structured approach,” Mr. Amano said.
Iranians say they have a bitter memory of allowing IAEA inspections and providing replies on a long list of queries over its nuclear program in the past decade. Now, Tehran says such queries should not be revived or remain open-ended once the IAEA has verified them.
Mr. Mehmanparast said Iran provided detailed explanations to IAEA questions on six outstanding issues in the past, but instead of giving Iran a clean bill of health, the agency leveled new allegations on the basis of “alleged studies” provided by Iran’s enemies.
Iran uses that term to refer to a list of questions including a dispute at Parchin, a military site southeast of Tehran, where the agency suspects Iran ran explosive tests needed to set off a nuclear charge.
Tehran has in the past allowed IAEA inspectors twice into Parchin, but now it says any new agency investigation must be governed by an agreement that lays out the scope of such a probe.
“Obligations of the other party must be clearly specified. If a claim is to be raised on a spot in Iran every day and (the U.N. agency) seeks to visit our military facilities under such a pretext … this issue will be unending,” Mr. Mehmanparast said.
Iranian leaders appear to be frustrated over the long investigations. Prominent lawmakers say Iran wants an end to the probe once and for all.
“We are interested to put an end to these ambiguities. We don’t want a prolongation of this process,” Alaeddin Boroujerdi, head of the parliament’s security committee, said recently.
Iran is under four sets of Security Council sanctions and stepped-up Western oil and banking sanctions over its refusal to halt uranium enrichment, a technology that can be used to produce nuclear fuel or materials that can be used for a warhead.
By compromising on the IAEA probe, Iran could argue that the onus was now on the six powers to show some flexibility, temper their demands, and roll back U.S. and European sanctions that have hit Iran’s critical oil exports and blacklisted the country from international banking networks.
Mr. Mehmanparast made it clear Tuesday what Iran wants in return for cooperation with the IAEA: “In exchange for the easing of those ambiguities, our nuclear case should go back to its normal procedure and all the discussions raised about our nuclear case should be stopped.”
By Matt Kibbe
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