IAEA Board of Governors Updated on Iran Verification Process

IAEA Board of Governors Updated on Iran Verification ProcessIAEA Board of Governors Updated on Iran Verification Process

International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Yukiya Amano provided an update on the agency's task of overseeing Iran's commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal to its board of governors.

Under the UN-endorsed agreement with major powers, Tehran agreed to roll back its nuclear development in return for relief from international sanctions.

US President Donald Trump has demanded the international deal, reached under his predecessor Barack Obama, be renegotiated, citing concerns that it has stopped short of curbing Tehran's missile and regional activities.

He refused to certify that Tehran was complying with the accord, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, on Oct. 13.

Trump's move, at odds with the commitment of other parties to the deal, meant the US Congress must decide by mid-December whether to reimpose Iran sanctions. If the congress reinstates sanctions, the United States would in effect be in violation of the deal and it would likely fall apart. If lawmakers do nothing, the deal remains in place. Iran argues that all the participants in the multi-party nuclear negotiations agreed that the 2015 agreement's terms would not cover issues beyond the nuclear issue and that its missile activities are purely defensive and legitimate.

Trump's decertification of Iran on flimsy grounds also runs counter to IAEA's reports that have certified Iran's full compliance.

He has claimed that the agency has not used its full authority in monitoring Iran's nuclear activities and is pushing the nuclear watchdog to pressure the Islamic Republic by seeking access to military sites.

Iranian officials have ruled out any foreign visits to military facilities, citing national security concerns.

IAEA refuted Trump's decertification announcement in its latest report on verification and monitoring in the Islamic Republic of Iran in light of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231 earlier this month.

The report said Iran has remained within the main limits set by the deal on its nuclear activity.

  Adequate Access  

Amano reiterated that position in his Thursday statement to IAEA's board of governors by declaring that the nuclear-related commitments undertaken by Iran are being implemented.

"The agency continues to verify the non-diversion of nuclear material declared by Iran under its Safeguards Agreement. Evaluations regarding the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran continue. As of today, the agency has had access to all the locations that we needed to visit," he said.

He paid a visit to Iran in October for discussions with President Hassan Rouhani and other top officials.  In his statement to the board members on Thursday, Amano said he stressed the importance of Iran's implementation of its deal obligations, IAEA's website reported.

"I also encouraged Iran to ratify the Additional Protocol to its Safeguards Agreement, which it is provisionally applying at present," he added.

During that trip, Amano reconfirmed Iran's full compliance with the deal, in remarks that sent a strong signal to Trump. "Iran is carrying out all its commitments and all others involved in JCPOA should do the same," he said.

Washington's European allies that helped negotiate the Iran deal, namely Britain, France and Germany, have criticized Trump's bellicose stance and underlined their desire to keep the landmark deal intact.


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