‘No progress’ in talks with Iran: UN nuclear watchdog – Times of India


VIENNA: The UN nuclear watchdog said Thursday it had seen no progress in talks with Iran over undeclared nuclear material at three sites, but a new visit to Tehran was planned this month.
“The Director General (Rafael Grossi) is deeply concerned that progress has still not been made in clarifying and resolving the outstanding security issues,” the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said in a report seen by AFP.
Senior agency officials will make a technical visit to Tehran before the end of November, the report said.
“The agency has reiterated that it expects to receive technically credible explanations from Iran on these issues, including access to sites and materials, and to take the samples where necessary at this meeting,” it added.
The director general “reiterates that these issues … need to be resolved in order for the agency to be able to provide assurances that Iran’s nuclear program is exclusively peaceful,” it added.
The UN watchdog has urged Iran to provide answers about the presence of nuclear materials at three undeclared sites, a key sticking point that led to a resolution criticizing Iran at a meeting of the IAEA’s board of governors in June.
In a separate report from AFP, the IAEA said Iran’s stockpile of enriched uranium stood at 3,673.7 kilograms on Oct. 22, down 267.2 kilograms from the latest quarterly report.
Iran has enriched uranium well beyond the limits set in a landmark 2015 agreement with world powers, which began to unravel when the United States withdrew from it in 2018.
Since April last year, on-off talks between Tehran and world powers have been underway to revive the deal, earning Iran much-needed sanctions in return for curbing its nuclear program.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken reiterated late last month that he saw little room to reinstate the deal, citing the terms of church leadership as major protests rage across the country.

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