Iran says full cooperation with inspectors if allowed to make nuclear fuel
VIENNA (AFP) Sep 12, 2005
Iran said Monday it would cooperate fully with UN atomic inspectors provided it was allowed to make nuclear fuel, according to a document presented to members of the UN watchdog International Atomic Energy Agency.
The document presented by Iranian foreign ministry official Ali Reza Soltanieh at an informal IAEA meeting in Vienna was Iran's first detailed reaction to a report by IAEA director general Mohamed ElBaradei on September 2 that said critical questions remained about Tehran's nuclear program.
The United States says Iran is hiding work on developing nuclear weapons and wants the IAEA to refer the Islamic Republic to the UN Security Council, which could impose penalties.
In a clear reference to the United States the Iranian document says the IAEA has "to prevent a certain state" from escalating the conflict "under the false pretext of the existence of WMD (weapons of mass destruction)."
The report also confirmed that Iran had in early August resumed fuel cycle work that it had suspended last November in order to start talks with the European Union on guaranteeing its nuclear program is peaceful, as Tehran claims it is.
The IAEA called August 11 on Iran to stop the fuel activities in order to resume the talks.
Iran said the IAEA report was misleading, particularly in saying that Iran was "overdue" in providing full cooperation with the agency's two-and-a-half-year-old investigation into Iranian nuclear activites.
The agency's 35-nation board of governors is to meet next Monday, with the United States and the EU seeking to send Iran before the UN Security Council if Tehran persists in activities towards making what can be fuel for civilian power reactors or in highly refined form the explosive core of atom bombs.
Diplomacy is now focused on a UN summit in New York from Wednesday to Friday which Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Russian President Vladimir Putin are to attend.
The Iranian document Monday said the IAEA has "to prevent a certain state. . . to take all achievements so far made by the IAEA, a hostage and derail the process to outside the framework of the IAEA."
The document said this would be "pushing for confrontation which definitely endanger regional and global security."
The IAEA's investigation of Iraq, where it found no signs of a nuclear weapons program, was cut short by the US-led invasion of that country in March 2002. The United States then failed to find any WMD in Iraq.
Iran "declares that it is determined to continue its full cooperation with the IAEA ... provided that Iran is not deprived from its inalienable rights for peaceful uses of nuclear energy, including nuclear fuel cycle," the document said.
In Moscow, Iranian Vice President Gholamreza Aghazadeh, who heads his country's atomic energy agency, said the IAEA had no grounds for referring Iran to the UN Security Council.
"If there are countries that want to politicise this file, we will react in an appropriate manner. If the file is sent, our reaction will be firm and very clear. And if that moment comes you will see it for yourselves," Aghazadeh said.
The Iranian IAEA document, titled as "complementary information to the report of the director general (ElBaradei)," said Iran had provided a full accounting of nuclear activities as well as "accesses to military sites following the allegations by a certain country and the opposition terrorist group supported by it," a reference to the United States and the Iranian mujahedeen resistance.
"The inspection proved the allegations to be baseless," the document said, referring to the Kolahdouz, Lavizan and Parchin sites where the United States claims Iran has done weapons explosive work related to atom bombs and possibly uranium enrichment.
Iran has refused to allow IAEA inspectors to visit another site near Lavizan, which is in Tehran, and to return for a second visit to Parchin, IAEA officials said.
The Iranian document said however that "new request for visit to Parchin is contrary to the agreement made in Vienna (that led to an) inspection conducted in the satisfactory manner."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.