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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran Press TV

'Iran, IAEA in process of resolving ambiguities in agency's report'

Iran Press TV

Wednesday, 22 February 2023 3:35 PM

Iran's nuclear body chief says officials of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) are in Tehran and talks are underway to resolve ambiguities related to an "incorrect" report by the agency inspectors about Iran's nuclear program.

Mohammad Eslami made the remarks on the sidelines of a cabinet meeting in Tehran on Wednesday.

He said the UN nuclear agency officials are in Tehran and have studied the issues that an inspector had previously raised.

On February 1, the UN nuclear agency accused Iran of making an undeclared change to the interconnection between the two clusters of advanced machines enriching uranium to up to 60 percent purity at its Fordow plant.

The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) immediately rejected the report, noting that the inspector had made an "incorrect" interpretation.

Earlier this week, Bloomberg published a report claiming that inspectors had found uranium enriched to 84 percent purity and were trying to determine if it was produced intentionally. The AEOI dismissed the report as a distortion of realities.

Eslami in his remarks on Wednesday noted that IAEA officials are "conducting talks, visits, and studies and ambiguities that occurred following the inspector's incorrect interpretation has been resolved or is being resolved."

"We have kept our ties with the IAEA based on the safeguards framework," Iran's nuclear chief told reporters.

He noted that Iran maintains interaction and coordination with the IAEA to avoid any new ambiguities in the process of bilateral ties.

Elsewhere, Eslami slammed the US for not adhering to its commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and also for not allowing others to fulfill their obligations.

Washington, under Donald Trump's administration, walked out of the deal in May 2018, imposing harsh sanctions against Tehran despite numerous IAEA reports which confirmed Iran's adherence to its commitments. Iran also reduced its commitments to the deal in a set of pre-announced and clear steps in the face of other sides' failure to secure its interests under the deal.

"This intense political pressure, which seeks to make Iran meet its commitments unilaterally while they renege on theirs, is completely unacceptable," Eslami said, adding that Iran "will not brook" political pressures and media hypes.

Tehran has urged the IAEA to refrain from politicizing the Iranian nuclear issue, refrain from bowing to pressures from the United States, Western countries, and the Israeli regime and maintain its independence and neutrality.

Iran's 'Plan B'

In related remarks on Wednesday, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said that Tehran will switch to its "Plan B" and "all options" will be on the table if Washington obstructs the talks on the revival of the JCPOA and removal of sanctions.

Speaking in a joint press conference with his Iraqi counterpart Fuad Hussein in Baghdad, the Iranian minister said that Tehran is ready to "conclude" an agreement in the negotiations.

Iran has been receiving "mixed messages" from the US regarding the revival of the deal, he said.

The Islamic Republic of Iran has always supported the path of diplomacy and dialogue, noted the minister, adding that Tehran stresses a "strong and lasting" agreement about the JCPOA.

He also hoped that the IAEA would follow up on negotiations with Iran solely from a "technical" point of view, without any "political considerations".

"The Islamic Republic of Iran has never sought a nuclear weapon and will never do so," he highlighted.

Negotiations between the parties to the deal kicked off in Vienna in April 2021, with the intention of bringing the US back into the deal and putting an end to its "maximum pressure" campaign against Iran.

Tehran maintains that it is necessary for the US to offer guarantees that it will not withdraw or violate the accord again.

The discussions, however, have been at a standstill since August 2022 due to Washington's insistence on not lifting all of the sanctions slapped on Tehran by the previous US administration and offering the necessary guarantees.

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