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. Timeline of Iran's nuclear standoff
VIENNA (AFP) Nov 14, 2004
Iran on Sunday agreed with the three main European Union powers to a full suspension of uranium enrichment, ending a deadlock over its response to US charges that Tehran is secretly developing nuclear weapons.

Following is a chronology of major dates in the dossier:


-- 2003 --

Feb 21: Head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) ElBaradei visits Iran to verify Tehran's claims that its nuclear program is peaceful, contrary to Washington's assertion that the country is preparing to build nuclear weapons.

June 19: IAEA requests that Iran sign on to an additional protocol of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and allow unannounced inspections of its nuclear sites.

Aug 26: Teheran says it will allow unannounced inspections, but demands guarantees that the inspectors will not divulge its strategic military secrets.

A confidential UN report reveals that Iran has developed two kinds of enriched uranium that are not needed for peaceful energy production.

Nov 10: An internal IAEA report states: "At the moment, there is no proof that Iran is creating nuclear weapons." The United States refutes this conclusion.

Dec 18: Iran signs the additional NPT protocol allowing unannounced inspections of its nuclear sites.


-- 2004 --

April 4: Iran denies having any secret nuclear sites, insisting that its experimental use of a uranium enrichment site in Isfahan (south of Teheran) does not violate any of its NPT obligations.

May 21: Iran hands over a more than 1,000-page report to the IAEA on its nuclear activities.

June 1: IAEA claims to have found new traces of enriched uranium that exceeded the levels necessary for civilian energy production.

July 31: Iran admits to having resumed production of parts for centrifuges that are used for enriching uranium, but insists that it has not resumed its enrichment activities.

Aug 28: Iranian President Mohammad Khatami says the IAEA must accept Iran's right to enrich uranium for peaceful purposes.

Sept 1: An IAEA report states that a number of Iran's claims concerning its nuclear development were "plausible", but expresses renewed concern over Iran's decision to resume large-scale production of the feed material for enriching uranium.

US Secretary of State Colin Powell claims the IAEA report warrants Security Council action.

Sept 13: IAEA board of governors meeting gets under way in Vienna.

Sept 14: Iran refuses to accept an unlimited suspension of uranium enrichment and says it will not stop manufacturing centrifuges.

Sept 18: IAEA gives deadline of November 25 for Tehran to reveal all its nuclear activities.

Sept 21: Iran say it has resumed large-scale conversion of uranium yellowcake ore, a step towards uranium enrichment.

Oct 21: Berlin, London and Paris call for Iran to suspend all uranium enrichment activities to avoid its case being brought before the Security Council, offering incentives for it to do so.

Oct 31: The Iranian parliament passes bill approving resumption of enrichment activities.

Nov 5-6: Talks in Paris, followed by announcement of "preliminary agreement".

Nov 14: Iran accepts complete suspension of uranium enrichment activities while further talks are held.

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