- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 8, 2003

The head of the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Mohammed ElBaradei, arrives in Tehran today in an effort to force the Iranian government to come clean about its nuclear program. In response to pressure from the Bush administration, the IAEA has become more willing than ever to go public with evidence that Tehran has refused to cooperate with U.N. inspectors.

Last month, the IAEA issued a report that, in essence, confirms long-standing charges by Washington and other critics that Iran is seeking to deceive the international community about its efforts to develop nuclear weapons. “Iran has failed to meet its obligations with respect to the reporting of nuclear material, its subsequent processing and use of that material and the declaration of facilities where the material was stored and processed,” the IAEA said. Also, Iran failed to declare that it ”had imported uranium and had produced nuclear material and what was done with the resulting waste.”

During today’s visit, Mr. ElBaradei will attempt to persuade Iran to do something it has thus far refused to do: agree to allow inspectors to carry out more intrusive inspections of its nuclear facilities on short notice. So long as Mr. ElBaradei forges ahead with his efforts to make Tehran tell the truth, he will receive — and deserve — the Bush administration’s strong support.

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