Tehran Confident IAEA Will Close PMD File

Tehran  Confident IAEA Will Close PMD FileTehran  Confident IAEA Will Close PMD File

Iran is confident that the International Atomic Energy Agency's board of governors will act discreetly and close the agency's investigation into Tehran's nuclear past by mid-December, a precondition for the July 14 nuclear pact to come into full force, Iran's envoy to IAEA said.

"We're confident that by December 15, when IAEA director general [Yukiya Amano] provides the final assessment … the member states would take the right decision on concluding the issue," IRNA quoted Reza Najafi as saying.

"Under the JCPOA, P5+1, in their capacity as members of the board of governors, must submit a draft resolution on closing the case for action by the board of governors," he said in a statement to a meeting of the board on Thursday.

The deal was negotiated with P5+1 (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany) to give Iran sanctions relief in return for time-bound constraints on its nuclear work.

Alongside the accord, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, a roadmap agreement was signed with the IAEA, which is tasked with assessing Tehran's nuclear past and is expected to submit a report to the board of governors next week.

The board will have until December 15 to review the report and decide whether to adopt a resolution drafted by P5+1 to announce the conclusion of the IAEA's probe into what it calls possible military dimensions of Iran's past nuclear program.

Iran denies its nuclear program may have been diverted from the peaceful path toward developing a nuclear bomb.

Amano delivered the opening speech in which he reiterated that his agency could not conclusively verify that Iran has not conducted any undeclared nuclear activities.

"We are not in a position to provide credible assurance about the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran, and therefore to conclude that all nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities."

The roadmap agreement committed Iran to providing the IAEA with enough data and explanations by mid-October to allow the director general to complete his final assessment report.

"The activities set out in the roadmap between Iran and the agency for the period to October 15 were completed on schedule. A wrap-up technical meeting took place between Iran and the agency on November 24," the UN nuclear chief said, according to a transcript of his remarks posted on IAEA's website.

***Not Black and White

"Next week, I expect to provide my final assessment on all past and present outstanding issues, as set out in my report of November 2011, for action by the board."

Amano told a news conference after the meeting that his assessment report will not reach a definitive conclusion on the PMD file, Reuters reported.

"The report will not be black and white," the IAEA's chief said. "What I can now say is that this is an issue that cannot be answered by 'yes' and 'no'."

Najafi explained, "As the IAEA is a technical organization, it can only give a technical evaluation. This is while many issues raised [about Iran's nuclear program] are political."