IAEA seals on Iran's nuclear plant to be removed Wednesday: official
TEHRAN (AFP) Aug 10, 2005
The seals that the UN nuclear watchdog had placed on Iran's Isfahan uranium conversion plant will be removed on Wednesday, the head of Iran's nuclear energy agency was quoted as saying on state television.
"The rest of seals will be removed today and the activities will resume," said Gholamreza Aghazadeh.
Breaking the seals is the next crucial stage at the plant after Iran resumed suspended uranium conversion activities on Monday, sparking warnings of an international crisis.
Conversion turns uranium ore or yellowcake into a feed gas for enriching uranium, which can be the fuel for reactors or the explosive core of atom bombs.
The UN's watchdog International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), meeting in Vienna Tuesday, was unable to agree on a response to Monday's move by the Islamic republic, and the body is to continue the emergency talks Wednesday.
Iran has been under investigation for more than two years by the IAEA, which has accused it of hiding controversial nuclear work but has yet to find any proof of a weapons programme.
Washington has taken the most hardline stance, accusing Tehran of using a civilian nuclear program as cover for a quest for atomic weapons, a charge Iran denies.
Speaking in Crawford, Texas, after the first day of the IAEA talks, US President George W. Bush warned Iran that the threat of UN sanctions over its nuclear activities remained, and made clear he was was "deeply suspicious" of Tehran's stated intention to resume talks with a trio of European Union states.
"We'll have to watch very carefully," Bush told reporters.
"They have, in the past, said they would adhere to international norms and then were caught enriching uranium. And that's dangerous."All rights reserved. © 2005 Agence France-Presse. Sections of the information displayed on this page (dispatches, photographs, logos) are protected by intellectual property rights owned by Agence France-Presse. As a consequence, you may not copy, reproduce, modify, transmit, publish, display or in any way commercially exploit any of the content of this section without the prior written consent of Agence France-Presse.