US and Europe dismissing IAEA warnings
Islam News – The US and Europe have decided to set aside a fresh warning from the director general of the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) that it is no longer possible to say with confidence whether Iran is seeking to build a bomb, as they press on with attempting to revive its nuclear deal with the west.
Rafael Grossi says Iran is not co-operating or providing any answers to questions his agency has posed after it found nuclear particles at four undeclared sites.
Grossi’s findings were reported to a board meeting of the IAEA in Vienna, and are deeply awkward for the US, France, Germany and the UK, which have collectively decided that the prize of a revived nuclear deal is so great they will not act on the complaints of the UN nuclear inspectorate, even if this temporarily risks the integrity of the UN inspection process.
The sixth round of nuclear talks is due to start in Vienna on Thursday in the hope that a brief pause to allow delegations to consult national capitals will achieve the required breakthrough; allowing the US to rejoin the nuclear deal; sanctions on Iran to be lifted and Iran itself to come back into full compliance.
Speaking to the IAEA board on Monday, Grossi said: “The lack of progress in clarifying the agency’s questions concerning the correctness and completeness of Iran’s safeguards declarations seriously affects the ability of the IAEA to provide assurance of the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear programme.”
Grossi is especially exasperated since he believed he had reached a new understanding with Iran about his inquiries after a visit to Iran was supposed to inject a new urgency into a process that has been continuing since 2018.
It has always been open to the E3 – France, Germany and the UK – to put the lack of cooperation into the dispute mechanism or to move a motion at the board condemning Iran.
Separately Grossi has reported on Iran’s moves away from the constraints imposed by the 2015 deal. He reports Iran managed to produce 2.4 kilograms (5.3 pounds) of highly enriched uranium in the six weeks since saboteurs struck the country’s primary enrichment facility in Natanz. The 11 April attack prompted Iran to begin enriching uranium to levels of 60% purity, just below the threshold normally used in bombs.
Iranian brinkmanship is said by western diplomats to be teetering on the edge of what is tolerable in the negotiations, or likely to make it impossible to sell the deal to domestic public opinion.
Source : The Guardian