News ID: 273196
Published: 0147 GMT August 21, 2020

IAEA chief mulling over Iran visit: NHK

IAEA chief mulling over Iran visit: NHK
Head of International Atomic Energy Agency Rafael Grossi

Head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Rafael Grossi, is planning to visit Iran for the first time, according to Japan’s national broadcaster, NHK.

Citing diplomatic sources, the Japanese media said on Friday that Grossi hopes to visit Tehran as early as next week to hold talks with senior Iranian officials.

The IAEA plans to release its updated report on Iran's nuclear program in early September, ahead of a Board of Governors meeting in the middle of the month. The Iranian issue is expected to be the main focus in the meeting.

Grossi's planned visit to Iran follows a visit by his senior staff in charge of inspections in mid-August.

Iran has taken steps to reduce its commitments under a landmark 2015 nuclear deal with six world powers following the US unilateral withdrawal from the agreement and reimposition of sanctions against Iran in 2018, but it says is ready to restore all those commitments anytime that its interests are met within the framework of the nuclear deal.

In July, Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi said Iran will continue its peaceful nuclear program according to the terms of the agreement with the IAEA since Tehran sees the peaceful use of nuclear energy as an inalienable right of the nation, according to Press TV.

“We will go on with our peaceful nuclear program according to the rules and regulations set and agreed upon with the IAEA,” Araqchi wrote in an article for a Polish periodical.

US President Donald Trump, a hawkish critic of the historic deal, unilaterally withdrew Washington from the agreement in May 2018, and unleashed the “toughest ever” sanctions against the Islamic Republic in defiance of global criticism.

In response, Tehran has so far rowed back on its nuclear commitments five times in compliance with articles 26 and 36 of the nuclear deal.

As a first step, Iran increased its enriched uranium stockpile to beyond the 300 kilograms set by the deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

In the second step, Tehran began enriching uranium to purity rates beyond the JCPOA limit of 3.76 percent.

In the third phase, after the Europeans failed to meet a 60-day deadline to meet Iran’s demands and fulfill their commitments under the deal, Iran started up advanced centrifuges to boost the country's stockpile of enriched uranium and activated 20 IR-4 and 20 IR-6 centrifuges for research and development purposes.

In November last year, Iran began injecting gas into centrifuges at the Fordo plant as part of its fourth step away from the JCPOA under the supervision of the IAEA.

The Iranian government in January issued a statement announcing its decision to take the fifth and final step in reducing its commitments under the JCPOA.




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