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IAEA chief: Iran keeping a ‘fraction’ of its commitments

Rafael Grossi was referring to Tehran's obligations under the Joint Statement of March 4.

International Atomic Energy Agency Director-General Rafael Grossi addresses the IAEA Board of Governors, March 9, 2020. Credit: D. Calma/IAEA.
International Atomic Energy Agency Director-General Rafael Grossi addresses the IAEA Board of Governors, March 9, 2020. Credit: D. Calma/IAEA.

Iran is adhering to a “fraction” of its commitments outlined in a March 4 agreement, International Atomic Energy Agency Director-General Rafael Grossi said on Monday.

Addressing the U.N. watchdog’s Board of Governors meeting in Vienna, Grossi expressed disappointment that more progress had not been made in implementing March’s Joint Statement regarding the Non-Proliferation Treaty Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement while highlighting some positive actions taken, including for the first time installing uranium enrichment monitoring devices at the Fordow and Natanz sites.

“But this is a fraction of what we envisaged and what needs to happen now is a sustained and uninterrupted process that leads to all the commitments contained in the Joint Statement being fulfilled without further delay,” the IAEA chief emphasized.

IAEA Director-General Rafael Grossi takes questions from reporters at the Board of Governors meeting in Vienna on June 5, 2023.

In confidential reports released last week ahead of the Board of Governors meeting, the IAEA noted that it has closed two investigations into Iranian nuclear sites.

One probe was closed into traces of man-made uranium found at the undeclared Marivan site in Abadeh County, in the southern province of Fars, and another was closed at the underground Fordow facility after inspectors found uranium particles enriched to 83.7%.

Grossi said that other safety issues between Tehran and the agency under the Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement still need to be resolved for the IAEA “to be in a position to provide assurance that Iran’s nuclear program is exclusively peaceful.”

On Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the closing of the probes constituted a “surrender” to Tehran. 

“About Iran, Iran is continuing to lie to the International Atomic Energy Agency. The agency’s capitulation to Iranian pressure is a black stain on its record,” said Netanyahu.

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