Sep 16, 2021, 2:48 PM
Journalist ID: 1195
News Code: 84473127
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Iran warns against IAEA’s hasty approach

London, IRNA – Iran’s Ambassador to the International Organization in Vienna warned that the UN watchdog’s counterproductive and hasty approach towards Iran could be a hurdle against future interactions based on good faith.

In his speech in the quarterly meeting of Board of Governors of International Atomic Energy Oragnization on the NPT safeguards in Iran, Kazem Gharibabadi explained stances of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

The following is the most important excerpts of Gharibabadi’s remarks:

There is no safeguards related issue regarding Iran’s ongoing nuclear activities and this important point has been confirmed, once again consistent with the previous ones, in the current report of the Director General.

Likewise, Iran has voluntarily continued practical and constructive interactions and working relations with the Agency to address questions about a few immaterial and insignificant issues. Despite sincere efforts, it is profoundly inadequate that, the Secretariat has taken a counterproductive and hasty approach in reporting the matter at the expense of its own credibility.

It is regrettable that despite Iran’s written explanations regarding the presence of depleted uranium contamination, which were delivered to the Agency on 26 May 2021, the Agency still keeps repeating that “Iran had yet to provide an explanation”. The Agency has to rectify this situation. As it was explained by Iran, based on our investigation into the background of the activities carried out in the location, there was no precedent of any nuclear activity; therefore, the origin of the contamination declared by the Agency is absolutely unknown to us.

Apparently this has become a malpractice by the Agency that every time that we come close to concluding an issue, new questions are raised which prepares the ground for an open and endless process. This practice is not acceptable and contradicts the Agency’s professionalism.

On the natural uranium in the form of a metal disc at location 2, as the Agency calls it, I should remind and recall that the Agency’s inspectors carried out in-field verification activity on this matter at a declared facility twice during the second half of 2020. These were in addition to the annual PIV which usually is carried out in the first half of the year. In the May meeting in Tehran, we challenged the Agency’s claims on this issue which are merely based on a few non-authentic and unsubstantiated images without presenting any supporting evidence. We have stated vividly to the Agency that it is not possible for Iran to take any action accordingly, and it is upon the Agency to rectify this improper practice.

How is it possible that an insignificant amount of material belonging to two decades ago affect the peaceful nature of the nuclear program of a country, while that country is hosting more than 20 percent of the Agency’s inspections at the global level and has accepted, for more than 5 years, the most robust verification and monitoring activities of the Agency?! The statement of the Agency in its report is completely unprofessional, illusory and unfair. We really hope that the Director General rectifies it because continuation of this path may negatively affect Iran’s approach toward the Agency.

In this context, I would like to reiterate that constructive engagement requires positive environment, avoiding expressing any pre-judgment, raising artificial concerns or deadlines, as well as unnecessary and disproportionate overstatement of the trivial issues.

I would like to reiterate that it is a bitter irony of the history that, the Agency overlooks Israeli regime’s nuclear weapon program in the volatile region of the Middle East. Regrettably, this regime continues to ignore the international community by downplaying the significance of the Treaty, denying acceding to the Treaty and refusing to place all its nuclear facilities and activities under the Agency's comprehensive safeguards regime.

Israel is now even enjoying a more preferential treatment as compared with that of the Nuclear Weapon States, who are members to the NPT and have several obligations specifically under Articles I and VI of the Treaty. While for being still out of the NPT, Israel is free from any obligations under the Treaty, and enjoys all advantages of the IAEA Statute which are interlinked with the NPT.

Such a situation has given this regime the audacity to ridicule the authority and mandate of the Agency in preventing the diversion of its nuclear materials and activities. Most importantly, this regime has become so cynically bold as to manipulate the realities and criticize other Members of the NPT on the account that they have obligations due to their membership in the Treaty, but Israel has not. This is a very serious shortcoming and failure in the work of the Agency, which should be addressed properly.

In this situation, what is the advantage of being both a NPT member and fully implementing the Agency’s safeguards? How could the international community see the IAEA as a serious, professional and impartial partner when it does not pursue evenly and justly the implementation of its comprehensive safeguards regime for all its Members, and yet does not seriously discuss the necessity of verification activities and inspections of, for-instance, Israel's nuclear program?

Doesn’t the policy of silence and negligence about Israel’s nuclear program send a negative message to the members of the NPT meaning that “being a member of the Treaty equals accepting the most robust monitoring and verifications, while being outside the Treaty means to be free from any obligation and criticism, and even be rewarded”?!

A regime which is not bound by the NPT and its Comprehensive Safeguards should not be seen as a proponent of the non-proliferation regime. Israeli talking about non-proliferation is like mafia talking about fighting against organized crimes! The Agency, as the most relevant organization responsible for preserving and upholding the three pillars of the NPT, has a distinct role in, and must take a clear stand on the unacceptability of Israel’s remaining outside the NPT framework and its continuing defiance to placing all its nuclear activities and facilities under the Agency’s comprehensive safeguards system.

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