TEHRAN: Iran and therefore the UN atomic agency on Sunday announced the IAEA would continue surveillance of Tehran’s nuclear activities, soothing a sore point in talks to resuscitate a 2015 deal to curb its program.
With negotiations in Vienna between Iran and world powers deadlocked, the steps hashed out with International nuclear energy Agency chief Rafael Grossi on a visit to Tehran leave a chink of hope for US President Joe Biden’s ambition to revive the agreement, referred to as the JCPOA.
Since Donald Trump’s administration walked away in 2018, Iran has also retreated from many of its commitments.
In a joint statement on Sunday, Grossi and Iranian nuclear energy Organisation (AEOI) chief Mohammad Eslami — also one among the country’s vice presidents — hailed a “spirit of cooperation and mutual trust”, while noting that surveillance was a problem to be treated “exclusively during a technical manner”.
Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (@iaeaorg) @rafaelmgrossi arrived in #Iran today. He will meet Vice-President and head of the @aeoi_ir . The two sides will issue a joint Statement. pic.twitter.com/ZHXhh4YIUN— IRNA News Agency (@IrnaEnglish) September 11, 2021
Eslami welcomed “good and constructive negotiations with Mr Grossi”, while again insisting on the “technical” nature of the discount , Iran’s official IRNA press agency reported.
Their deal relates to limits Iran has imposed on the IAEA’s ability to watch various of its nuclear facilities.
Iran has refused to supply real-time footage from cameras and other surveillance tools that the United Nations agency has installed in these locations.
Under a compromise deal, the monitoring equipment remains within the agency’s custody but the info is in Iran’s possession, and must not be erased as long because the arrangement remains effective .
Initially agreed for 3 months, the compromise was extended by another month then expired on Midsummer Day .
With no word on next steps, the IAEA said during a statement last Tuesday that its “verification and monitoring activities have been seriously undermined”” by Tehran’s actions.
But under Sunday’s agreement, “IAEA’s inspectors are permitted to service the identified equipment and replace their storage media which can be kept under the joint IAEA and (Iran’s) AEOI seals within the Islamic Republic of Iran,” the joint statement said.
“The way and therefore the timing are agreed by the 2 sides.”
The surveillance issue had heightened tensions when the new government of President Ebrahim Raisi was taking charge in Tehran.