|Iran hopes IAEA talks will help resolve ‘outstanding’ issues||
TEHRAN - The Iranian ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency has expressed hope that the next round of talks between Tehran and the UN nuclear watchdog would help resolve “outstanding” issues.
Tehran and the IAEA have agreed to meet at the office of the Islamic Republic’s diplomatic mission to international organizations in Vienna on May 14 and 15.
Iranian and IAEA officials met in Tehran from January 29 to 31 and February 21 to 22.
“We hope that this will be a very constructive and successful meeting,” Ambassador Ali Asghar Soltanieh told Reuters in an interview published on Monday.
“The main purpose is to negotiate on a modality and framework to resolve outstanding issues and remove ambiguities,” he added.
When asked whether the UN nuclear watchdog could visit the Parchin military site, which is located southeast of Tehran, Soltanieh said, “Every action will be implemented based on this framework, afterward.”
Tehran rejected requests by the IAEA delegations to inspect the Parchin site during their two recent visits to Iran.
On Iran’s uranium enrichment activities, the Iranian ambassador said, “We (will) never stop enrichment activities in Iran,” describing it as an inalienable right.
The main bone of contention between Tehran and the West is Iran’s uranium enrichment program.
Iran says all its nuclear activities are totally peaceful, and, as an IAEA member and a nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty signatory, it has the legal right to produce nuclear fuel for its research reactors and nuclear power plants.
In an interview with the Persian service of the Mehr News Agency published on April 28, Soltanieh stated, “Iran has closely cooperated with the IAEA over the past years.”
“During numerous inspections over these years, no evidence of diversion to military purposes has ever been found, and this itself proves that the peaceful nature of our country’s nuclear activities cannot be denied,” he said at the time.
“Islamic Iran, as a model, has shown that it will never relinquish its rights to the peaceful use of nuclear energy, such as enrichment activities, while abiding by its commitments,” Soltanieh stated.
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