Iran nuclear talks 'going round in circles'
Vienna, June 3, 2013
The UN nuclear agency chief said on Monday that no progress had been made towards clarifying concerns about Iran's nuclear programme, and that talks with Tehran had for some time been "going around in circles".
"This is not the right way to address issues of such great importance to the international community, including Iran," Yukiya Amano, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, told the IAEA's 35-nation governing board.
In unusually hard-hitting comments, Amano made clear his growing concerns about Iran, which denies Western allegations that it is seeking the capability to make nuclear bombs.
Iran was advancing its activities related to the construction of a heavy water research reactor, and its number of uranium enrichment centrifuges and stockpile of refined uranium were increasing, he said.
"These activities are in clear contravention of resolutions adopted by the (IAEA) Board of Governors and the United Nations Security Council," Amano said, according to a copy of his speech at the closed-door board meeting.
Referring to the IAEA's attempts since early 2012 to engage with Tehran over suspicions about possible atomic bomb research by the Islamic state, Amano said: "The agency has solid grounds for requesting clarification in relation to possible military dimensions" of Iran's nuclear programme. - Reuters