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Major differences with Iran on nuclear drive: IAEA

Last Updated: Saturday, February 25, 2012 - 00:51

Vienna: The UN atomic agency said today it
has "major differences" with Iran and "major concerns" about
its nuclear programme, after inspectors probing suspected
weapons work returned from Tehran empty-handed.

"An intensive discussion was held on the structured
approach to the clarification of all outstanding issues
related to Iran`s nuclear programme" during two recent visits,
the agency said in a new report.

"No agreement was reached between Iran and the Agency,
as major differences existed with respect to this approach,"
the International Atomic Energy Agency said.

"The agency continues to have serious concerns
regarding possible military dimensions to Iran`s nuclear

It added that Iran had tripled production of
20-percent enriched uranium since its last assessment in
November, with 696 centrifuges installed at its heavily
bunkered Fordo site -- all of them older-generation, however.

Uranium further enriched to 90-per cent purity could
in theory be used in a nuclear bomb, although Iran denies
intending to do so, saying its activities are peaceful.

A senior official familiar with the investigation said
that during their two visits to Tehran in the past month -- no
more trips are planned for now -- IAEA inspectors spoke only
to "middle men."

"Iran wanted to constrain the process, and put us in a
harness," the official said on condition of anonymity.
In particular, the IAEA said there was a
"disappointing" refusal by Iran to allow the team access to
the Parchin military site near Tehran, where a November IAEA
report said scientists had conducted suspicious explosives


First Published: Friday, February 24, 2012 - 21:46

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