IAEA-Iran talks on N-issue delayed



Vienna: The next round of talks over probing Iran's disputed nuclear programme between authorities in Tehran and the UN nuclear watchdog will be held Feb 13, a day later than earlier scheduled, Xinhua reported.

Talks were earlier scheduled for Feb 12 but the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Tuesday refused to state the reason behind extending the date.

IAEA deputy director general Herman Nackaerts said last week that a new round of talks would be held Feb 12 in Tehran, after a two-day negotiation (Jan 16-17) failed to reach an agreement or sign any document over the so-called structured approach to resolve the Iranian nuclear issue.

Iran and the West are locked in a bitter dispute over the former's nuclear ambitions, with the latter accusing Tehran of developing nuclear weapon under cover of its peaceful purpose nuclear programme, a charge Iran has consistently denied.

Iran maintains that its rights to peaceful nuclear activities and the right to uranium enrichment programme should be recognised by the IAEA and world powers.

IANS