IAEA chief to visit Iran in days

TEHRAN (FNA)- Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Yukiya Amano is slated to pay a visit to Tehran next week, Iran’s top nuclear official announced on Tuesday.

“Amano will pay an official visit to Tehran on November 11,” Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Ali Akbar salehi said, adding that “the visit will take place at the invitation of the AEOI”.

“We hope that during Amano’s visit both sides would discuss relevant issues and make a joint statement afterwards,” Salehi underlined.

After two days of talks, Iran and the IAEA inked a new agreement last Tuesday based on which both sides are committed to pursue the settlement of Tehran’s nuclear case at the UN body.

During the second round of their talks on Tuesday, Iran and the IAEA reached a new accord which would replace the previous frameworks.

The next round of talks between Iran and the IAEA is planned to be held in Tehran on November 11.

The new agreement was the most important achievement of the two-day talks in Vienna.

Last Tuesday, a senior diplomat close to the Iranian team of negotiators with the IAEA revealed that Tehran has submitted new proposals to the IAEA in its Monday and Tuesday talks with the UN nuclear watchdog.

“Iran has presented a fresh proposal to the IAEA,” the diplomat told FNA on Tuesday, referring to the Monday remarks by Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Seyed Abbas Araqchi who said Iran has adopted a new approach in negotiations with the UN nuclear watchdog.

The first day of the 12th round of technical talks between Iran and the IAEA was held on Monday, and the second day of the negotiations kicked off this morning (Vienna time).

The first day of talks was presided jointly by Iran’s Residing Representative at the UN nuclear watchdog Reza Najafi and IAEA Deputy Head Thro Varioranteh at the UN offices in Vienna.

Najafi had previously announced that the two sides are to focus on detailed and conceptual discussions in this new round of their discussions.

A few hours before the start of the talks, Araqchi met with Director-General of the IAEA Yukiya Amano in Austria.

During the meeting, the Iranian diplomat elaborated on Tehran’s new approach in the talks with the UN body.

Araqchi, who is also a member of the Iranian team of negotiators in the nuclear talks with the six world powers as well, arrived in the Austrian capital a few hours before the start of Iran-IAEA talks.

The two sides did not reveal much of the contents of their discussions, but Amano has reportedly told Araqchi that “it is very important for all of us that we can show concrete progress”.

In response, Araqchi said, “We think this is the time to take a new approach to resolving (questions) between Iran and the IAEA and look to the future for further cooperation in order to ensure the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear program.”

“It is peaceful and it will remain peaceful for ever,” Araqchi said.

Late in September, Iran and the IAEA held talks in Vienna and discussed issues pertaining to Tehran’s nuclear program. They resumed their fresh talks in the Austrian capital ten hours after the historic ministerial level nuclear talks between the Islamic Republic and the six world powers in New York.

Najafi headed the Iranian delegation in talks with a group of the agency’s experts. Najafi replaced Iran’s former ambassador to the IAEA Ali Asqar Soltaniyeh shortly after Iranian President Hassan Rouhani came to power.

Prior to that, Iran and the IAEA met in Vienna on May 15. The meeting, which was the 10th of its kind, was presided by Soltaniyeh and Nackaerts.

Iran appointed Najafi as its new envoy to the IAEA late in August.

Iran says its nuclear program is a peaceful drive to produce electricity so that the world’s fourth-largest crude exporter can sell more of its oil and gas abroad. Tehran also stresses that the country is pursuing a civilian path to provide power to the growing number of Iranian population, whose fossil fuel would eventually run dry.

The US and its western allies allege that Iran is pursuing a nuclear weapons program while they have never presented corroborative evidence to substantiate their allegations against the Islamic Republic.

Iran is under four rounds of UN Security Council sanctions for turning down West’s calls to give up its right of uranium enrichment, saying the demand is politically tainted and illogical.

Iran has so far ruled out halting or limiting its nuclear work in exchange for trade and other incentives, saying that renouncing its rights under the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) would encourage the world powers to put further pressure on the country and would not lead to a change in the West’s hardline stance on Tehran.

By Fars News Agency

 

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