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Politics
2021-November-24  15:58

IAEA Chief Calls for Supervision over Israel’s Atomic Program

TEHRAN (FNA)- Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Rafael Grossi underlined the need for Israel to join the Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to provide the UN nuclear watchdog’s access to its clandestine nuclear program.

“What I can say is that we believe that every country should subscribe to the nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty. This is something which is very important. The General Conference of the IAEA has approved several resolutions insisting that every state in the world adheres to this treaty, which we believe is very important,” Grossi told presstv on Tuesday.

He said the IAEA General Conference had “repeatedly approved resolutions exhorting” Israel, among others, to be part of the NPT.

Israel has long been possessing nuclear arms, refusing to join the NPT, and attempts to pile pressure on NPT signatory Iran.

Elsewhere, Grossi said he has held “very constructive” talks with Iranian officials as part of “a long day of discussions, talks, and negotiations” during a visit to the Islamic Republic.

He met with Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian and Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, Mohammad Eslami during his stay so far.

He said he was paying the visit after the two sides agreed during a trip by Grossi to Tehran in September that he should travel to the country soon to sit down with officials from Iran’s new administration.

“The relation between the agency and Iran is a permanent one…is a continuous one,” the IAEA chief also said.

Through its latest quarterly report, the agency affirmed conducting its routine regulatory checks of Iran’s nuclear energy program.

The United States and its Western allies, however, regularly come up with unfounded accusations concerning the quality of the bilateral cooperation between Iran and the IAEA. Tehran routinely refutes the allegations, citing technical facts to the contrary and reasserting its constant intention of working transparently with the international body.

The report cited only one instance of difference arising from Iran’s inability to allow the agency access to one location owing to underway legal and security investigation into a “terrorist action” targeting the facility.

The Islamic Republic’s nuclear facilities and scientists have come under repeated, and often deadly, terrorist attacks. The Israeli regime has either admitted to conducting the incidents or is the prime suspect in all of them.

Iran has asked the agency to help it complete the investigations.

Asked about the agency’s stance on such atrocities, Grossi said, “The use of violence is absolutely condemnable.”

The IAEA chief was then questioned about its position on the Israeli regime’s possession of a nuclear arsenal and the regime’s simultaneous refusal to subscribe to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Asked whether the agency was subjecting Iran to “prejudicial treatment” by consistently turning up the heat on the Islamic Republic, but refusing to adopt the same approach towards the Israeli regime, he denied that the agency had ever taken a political stance towards the Islamic Republic.

Grossi, however, condemned refusal by certain parties across the world to accede to the NPT, calling participation in the treaty “very important.”

The director-general was also asked about the issue of the United States’ own nuclear weapons program as well as Washington’s 2018 withdrawal from the nuclear agreement between Iran and others, and its re-introduction of its sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

The IAEA’s mandate is a “non-proliferation mandate not a disarmament mandate,” he said, and considered holding the US responsible for its violations of the nuclear accord to be outside the agency’s jurisdiction.

“The agency does not have or did not have competences in terms of the political decision of a country to remain or to withdraw from the agreement,” he said.

“So, in that regard, what we continued to do was to verify compliance or lack thereof of the provisions of the nuclear aspects of the JCPOA. And this is what we continue to do,” he added, referring to the deal by the acronym of its official name, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

“IAEA cannot be a party to solution of the sanctions problem. This is a political issue that needs to be solved between the United States and Iran, and I hope they would be able to do that.”

Grossi arrived in Tehran for meetings with top Iranian officials, days before the resumption of high-profile talks in Vienna on the removal of the United States’ sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

He said on Tuesday that he has held intensive talks with Iranian officials about issues of mutual interest, and hoped for a positive result from the negotiations.

“A few months ago during my visit to Iran, we agreed with Mr. Eslami that we would continue our joint work on transparency a few months later, as well as continuation and deepening of talks with the new government in Iran and I am proud to meet the Iranian foreign minister a few hours later,” Grossi said in a joint press conference with Eslami in Tehran.

“Today's talks were intensive and we are after continued negotiations to find common grounds,” he added.

“There are issues that we study with Mr. Eslami but our goal has been to define the perspective of the nuclear program in a way that we can help production of clean energies with respect to the climate changes and provide it to all. This was an issue which was discussed in detail in Glasgow meeting a few days ago,” Grossi said.

“We are making efforts to reach positive results from today meeting,” he added.

During the press conference, Eslami said that his country is determined to use peaceful nuclear program to improve the Iranian people’s lives, adding that the UN nuclear watchdog is due to help Tehran to this end.

“The important point between us and the Agency is that issues between the two sides are technical and (the assurance) that the Agency does not pay attention to the political issues and the enemies' plots to influence the path of progress of Iran’s nuclear program and is not influenced by them,” Eslami told reporters in a joint press conference with Grossi in Tehran on Tuesday.

“Mr. Grossi said several times today that they have witnessed no deviation in Iran’s nuclear programs and Iran continues its nuclear activities based on treaties and regulations,” he added.

Asked about the allegations raised by enemies against Iran’s nuclear program in the IAEA, Eslami said that they have been answered by Iran in the nuclear deal and that the case has been closed.

“We agreed today to end these issues and with the procedure that we will adopt, which is still being negotiated, talks on them will not continue,” he added.

“Iran is resolved in (developing) its nuclear program,” Eslami said, adding that the country wants to use different aspects of nuclear technology for a better living of the Iranian people and the IAEA will help Iran in this regard.