Iran failing to provide answers: UN nuclear watchdog

AFP , Friday 7 Nov 2014

Iran is still failing to provide answers in a probe into its nuclear activities, and is unlikely to do so before a November 24 deadline for a deal with world powers, the UN atomic watchdog said Friday.

"Iran has not provided any explanations" on two issues that Tehran had undertaken to clarify by August 25, the International Atomic Energy Agency said in a new quarterly report.

Iran and the IAEA have agreed to a "technical meeting to further discuss the two outstanding practical measures ... but not before November 24," said the report, not yet public but seen by AFP.

The IAEA conducts regular inspections of Iran's nuclear facilities but it also wants Tehran to address allegations of suspected covert efforts, mostly in the past, to develop nuclear weapons.

Iran, which rejects the accusations, agreed in May to provide the IAEA information on two out of around a dozen areas of suspicious alleged activity by the August deadline.

Iran and six world powers are seeking a separate landmark deal by November 24 but this concerns Iran's current and declared activities, most notably its uranium enrichment facilities.

But the US envoy to the IAEA, Laura Kennedy, said in September that the watchdog's allegations "must be addressed as part of any comprehensive" wider deal between Iran and world powers.

"Only when this happens will it be possible to have confidence that Iran's nuclear programme is and will remain exclusively peaceful," she told reporters.

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