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Senior UN nuclear inspector puts off trip to Iran

D. Bunker
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User ID: 82298
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04/20/2006 10:01 PM
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Senior UN nuclear inspector puts off trip to Iran
Senior UN nuclear inspector puts off trip to Iran

Friday, April 21, 2006 - ©2005 IranMania.com

LONDON, April 21 (IranMania) - According to an AFP report, a senior UN nuclear inspector put off a trip to Iran late Thursday in what diplomats said was a clear sign that Tehran is failing to give the UN atomic agency key concessions it demands.

The development comes with the UN Security Council waiting to see if Iran honors an April 28 deadline for it to halt uranium enrichment and cooperate fully with inspectors from the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency.

The IAEA's director of safeguards Ollie Heinonen has decided not to travel to Iran after being on standby for a trip following a visit to Tehran last week by IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei to seek a breakthrough in the Iranian nuclear crisis, a diplomat close to the IAEA told AFP.

An Iranian delegation was in Vienna this week negotiating with the IAEA on the agency's demands for Iran to suspend uranium enrichment that could be weapons-related and to cooperate fully with an over three-year-old IAEA investigation of an Iranian nuclear program which the United States charges hides secret atomic arms development, diplomats said.

Enrichment is a sensitive process as it can make either nuclear reactor fuel or atom bomb material.

Iran claims its program is a peaceful effort to generate electricity.

A diplomat said that whether Heinonen went had "depended on whether the Iranians currently in Vienna give the IAEA anything new."

The IAEA seeks documents on dealings Iran had with a nuclear black market network run by disgraced Pakistani Abdul Qadeer Kahn, the father of his country's atomic bomb.

The agency also wants to interview military officers who may have overseen secret work that could be nuclear-weapons related and to get more information on work Iran may have done on sophisticated P2 centrifuges, which can enrich uranium more quickly and abundantly, as well as documents it has on making uranium hemispheres that form the core of atom bombs.

The IAEA currently has an inspection team at the Iranian enrichment facility in Natanz but the stakes are high as ElBaradei is to submit a report next week to the UN Security Council on Iranian compliance.

Washington is pushing for moves that could lead to economic and other sanctions if Iran fails to comply but key Iranian allies and trading partners Russia and China are resisting such measures, AFP added.

[link to www.iranmania.com]

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User ID: 83647
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04/20/2006 10:06 PM
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Re: Senior UN nuclear inspector puts off trip to Iran
travel budgets must have been hit hard in the appropriations committees.