Reuters: The U.N. Security Council is likely to call on Iran to halt nuclear research shortly or risk “consequences”, the United States said in a statement to the nuclear watchdog agency board meeting on Wednesday. VIENNA (Reuters) – The U.N. Security Council is likely to call on Iran to halt nuclear research shortly or risk “consequences”, the United States said in a statement to the nuclear watchdog agency board meeting on Wednesday.
The statement, obtained by Reuters from a Western diplomat, said “the time has now come for the Council to act” as Iran had defied an International Atomic Energy Agency board resolution last month to suspend all nuclear fuel enrichment activity.
A senior European Union diplomat told Reuters shortly before that the council was expected to begin debate next week on Iran.
“As a first step, we envision a call (by the council) for Iran to cooperate with the IAEA and take the steps identified by the board to restore confidence,” said the statement delivered by the U.S. ambassador to the agency, Gregory Schulte.
“The Council will then be able to provide the wider authority the Agency needs to investigate Iran’s deeply troubling nuclear activities,” Schulte said.
He said the council’s approach should be “considered and incremental” in full consultation with all 15 Council members, which include veto-wielding Russia and China currently opposed to any steps such as sanctions that would isolate Tehran.
“(The council) should emphasise that Iran will face consequences” if does not heed appeals, Schulte said.
He suggested the IAEA consider invoking clauses in its nuclear safeguards agreement with Iran allowing “special inspections” to ease its access to certain information and areas. These could shed light on intelligence reports of military links to nuclear research in Iran.