Grossi Underscores Importance of Iran Talks

Grossi Underscores Importance of Iran Talks
Grossi Underscores Importance of Iran Talks

The head of the United Nations nuclear watchdog on Tuesday underscored the urgency of resuscitating diplomatic efforts to address Iran’s nuclear issue, saying the situation could quickly worsen if negotiations fail.
Rafael Mariano Grossi, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, said the diplomatic effort “is not at its best point,” but it was not his place to declare whether the process was “dead or alive.” However, he said progress is not impossible, AP reported.
“I hope to be able to re-set, restore, reinforce that indispensable dialogue,” he said during a discussion at the Chatham House think tank. “Without that, things are going to get worse.”
Iran began rebuilding its nuclear stockpile after former US president Donald Trump abandoned a 2015 agreement that limited the Islamic Republic’s atomic energy program in return for sanctions relief. Talks on restoring the deal have stalled since August when the EU presented the “final text” of a roadmap for progress that failed to get off the ground.
Grossi asserted last month that Iran had enough highly enriched uranium to build “several” nuclear weapons if it chose to do so. Tehran denies any military aspects to its nuclear activities. 
Grossi said the Middle East has a “unique set of problems” that will be aggravated if diplomatic efforts fail.
“I don’t see it in anybody’s interest that there will be proliferation there. I think we would be aggravating … the already fragile situation,” he said. “We’re not there yet. But we cannot really afford to fail.’’

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