IAEA inspector briefs member states on Iran site



IAEA inspector briefs member states on Iran site Vienna: The UN nuclear watchdog's chief inspector briefed member states on Thursday on his recent trips to Iran with satellite images showing unspecified "activities" at the Parchin military site, diplomats said.

But Herman Nackaerts' three-hour presentation did not include images showing conclusively that the Islamic republic was cleaning up the site near Tehran, where the agency suspects it carried out explosives tests, the diplomats said.

"One has to be concerned if they are actually doing any clean-up there, and I don't know that for certain," one senior Western envoy to the International Atomic Energy Agency said on condition of anonymity.

"I do not get the sense that there is anything to indicate that that is definitely happening," another diplomat said.

A senior official familiar with the investigation said last week meanwhile that the Vienna-based IAEA had "no information on any clean-up. We have been watching the site with satellite images and we couldn't spot any cleaning up".

The head of Iran's Nuclear Energy Organisation, Fereydoon Abbasi Davani, was quoted by the official IRNA news agency as saying on Wednesday that "no nuclear activity whatsoever" had taken place at Parchin.

An IAEA report published in November said there was "a large explosives containment vessel" there for large-scale conventional explosives tests consistent with designing a nuclear warhead for Shahab-3 ballistic missiles.

As a signatory to the Nuclear non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) supervised by the IAEA, Iran has to submit to UN inspections at its declared nuclear sites.

But military sites that do not have confirmed nuclear activities are off-limits unless provided for by agreement or under the terms of an Additional Protocol to the NPT that Iran briefly adhered to but dropped in 2006.

PTI