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IAEA Chief Concerned About Iran's Non-Cooperation With International Inspections

International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Rafael Grossi addresses the media after a board of governors meeting at the IAEA headquarters in Vienna, June 15, 2020
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Rafael Grossi addresses the media after a board of governors meeting at the IAEA headquarters in Vienna, June 15, 2020

The director general of the United nation's nuclear watchdog the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has expressed concern about the denial of access by Iran to its inspectors.

The Jerusalem post on Monday June 15 quoted Rafael Mariano Grossi as saying "with serious concern that, for over four months, Iran has denied us access to two locations and that, for almost a year, it has not engaged in substantive discussions to clarify our questions related to possible undeclared nuclear material and nuclear-related activities."

The IAEA Board of Governors started a four-day meeting on Monday, and reviewing the IAEA Director General's report is on the agenda of the meeting.

Bloomberg reported on Monday that Germany, France and the United Kingdom have prepared a resolution demanding Iran "fully cooperate" with the IAEA investigation.

Grossi said that the denial of access to inspectors by Iran adversely affects the agency's ability to answer questions and make sure that there are no undeclared material and activities in the Iranian nuclear establishments.

He called on Iran to immediately start cooperation with the IAEA and allow the international agency to inspect the centers it wants to examine.

Meanwhile, Reuters has also reported on Monday that the IAEA has "serious concerns" about Iran's continued denial of access to some of its nuclear sites. According to Reuters, the IAEA suspects that previous activities on these sites were aimed at producing nuclear weapons.

According to Reuters, U.S. intelligence agencies believe that until 2003, the Islamic Republic had a secret plan to develop nuclear weapons. Israel says that its access to an extensive information archive of Iran's nuclear program has provided Tel Aviv with even more information about Iran's previous nuclear activities.

Israel claims that it has moved this archive to Tel Aviv from Tehran within the frameworks of covert operations in February 2018. In the springof 2018, Benyamin Netanyahu broke the news about Israel's access to some 50 thousand documents and CDs containing Iran's nuclear secrets.

The Israeli Prime Minister said at the time that the initial objective of Iran's nuclear program was to develop nuclear weapons. Iran did not destroy these documents when it signed a nuclear agreement with world powers in 2015 and was been keeping them at a warehouse in Shourabad in southern Tehran before Israeli agents shipped them out of the country.

Later, Israel revealed that Iran also had a nuclear warehouse in Torqozabad near Tehran, but the Iranian Foreign Ministry ruled this out as an uncalculated and baseless lie. Iran's deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi even claimed that "some individuals have been pulling Netanyahu's leg."

Nonetheless, the IAEA confirmed that there were traces of enriched Uranium at the site and called on Tehran to declare the origin of the radioactive material. However, after two years, Iran has not offered any explanation to the IAEA and denied access to the site by the IAEA inspectors.

Meanwhile, the Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Mousavi threatened on Monday before the IAEA director’s remarks that "Iran may show a proportionate reaction if the IAEA makes a non-constructive decision."

The Board of Governors of the IAEA has not issued any resolution against Iran since 2012. Mousavi's reference to "non-constructive action" was possibly an allusion to the issuance of a new resolution against Tehran.

However, Mousavi did not elaborate on what Iran might do, but said: "They can guess what Iran's reaction might be."