Bloomberg: The UN’s nuclear agency may ask Iran to voluntarily suspend its atomic program after receiving the details of a report that shows the Islamic Republic is stepping up its efforts to enrich uranium. June 12 (Bloomberg) — The UN’s nuclear agency may ask Iran to voluntarily suspend its atomic program after receiving the details of a report that shows the Islamic Republic is stepping up its efforts to enrich uranium.
The International Atomic Energy Agency’s 35-member board of governors meets at 10:30 a.m. local time in Vienna. Iran began enriching a new batch of uranium last week and the agency needs better cooperation with the country’s authorities to be assured that the program is peaceful, IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei will report, according to a three-page copy of an inspection report seen by Bloomberg News.
Iran is continuing with its nuclear program, which it says is aimed at electricity production, in defiance of international pressure and a non-binding UN resolution. The nation has yet to react to European Union proposals, delivered June 6 and backed by the U.S., which offers incentives to Iran to end its atomic work.
Iran said today it’s nuclear program wasn’t negotiable, Agence France-Presse reported from Tehran.
The IAEA’s board sent the Iranian case to the United Nations Security Council Feb. 4 after the country refused to heed calls for it to suspend the enrichment program that the U.S. fears is a cover for making nuclear weapons.
Iran’s top nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani said yesterday that a European-led proposal aimed at stopping the nation from enriching uranium showed a “positive inclination” toward Iran as it contained no mention of “punishment” and didn’t have a deadline attached to it.
“What was given is a program with a positive tendency toward Iran and there is no mention of punishments,” state-run Iranian Students News Agency ISNA quoted Larijani as saying in Cairo yesterday. “It is said that a deadline has been set for Iran which is not correct.”
Iran is currently reviewing the incentive package offered by the EU and backed by the U.S., Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi said in Tehran yesterday. The spokesman reiterated Iran will not “compromise” or “negotiate” its rights to access peaceful energy and added some points of the proposal were “ambiguous” and others “not necessary.”
The incentive plan was agreed on June 1 by diplomats from the five permanent members of the UN Security Council — the U.S., China, Russia, the U.K. and France — as well as by Germany. Each of the permanent members has a veto over the council’s resolutions.