IAEA Should Focus on Roadmap Agreement

IAEA Should Focus on Roadmap Agreement IAEA Should Focus on Roadmap Agreement

The International Atomic Energy Agency should steer clear of marginal issues with regard to Iran's nuclear case and direct its efforts toward the roadmap agreement it signed with Tehran, the ambassador to the IAEA said.  

Under the roadmap, agreed alongside the nuclear accord reached between Iran and the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany) on July 14, the UN nuclear agency undertook to compile and submit an assessment report on Tehran's nuclear past and present to the IAEA's board of governors by Dec. 15.

Reza Najafi said, "As noted by [IAEA Director General Yukiya] Amano, the roadmap has committed the two sides to completing certain measures so the pending issues are closed by the year end."

"Given this, it would be better if the agency remained focused on implementing the roadmap," he was quoted by IRNA as saying on Monday.

Iran provided the UN nuclear watchdog with documents and explanations about its past nuclear program on Aug. 15 as agreed under the roadmap, which also requires it to clarify any further questions by Oct. 15 to enable Amano to complete the final assessment over the following two months.

In his opening statement at a board of governors' meeting on Monday, the IAEA chief said, "At its meeting on August 25, the board authorized me to undertake the verification and monitoring of Iran's nuclear-related commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (the official title of the nuclear pact) … subject to the availability of funds and consistent with our standard safeguards practices."

  Essential Prerequisite

Noting that Iran's implementation of the Additional Protocol to its safeguards agreement is critical to his agency's ability to monitor and verify the Islamic Republic's compliance with the JCPOA, he reminded the financial implications of the IAEA's job in this relation, an issue which he plans to deal with through contributions by member countries.

"Implementation of the Additional Protocol is an essential prerequisite for the agency to be able to provide, in due course, credible assurance about the absence of [any] undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran."

"There are no changes to the regular budget for 2016. We will need to meet all additional costs until the end of 2016 through extra-budgetary contributions. I intend to start consultations with member states immediately after the general conference on the implications of JCPOA implementation for the regular budget for 2017 and beyond."

Elsewhere, Amano told a news conference that it will take a lot of work to ultimately prepare the report by mid-December, Reuters reported.

"With regard to clarification of PMD, much work needs to be done," Amano said, referring to what the Vienna-based agency calls "possible military dimensions" of Iran's nuclear program.

Tehran denies its nuclear work may have any military aspects. He expressed optimism that the targets set in the roadmap agreement would be met, saying, "I do not have a particular concern that we will not be able to complete our assessment by the 15th of December."