TEHRAN: The tone is growing in the Iran nuclear record: The United States and Europe asked the IAEA to adopt a resolution on Wednesday, formally calling on Tehran to order, amid an impasse in negotiations to save the 2015 deal.
In response, the Islamic Republic had previously disconnected surveillance cameras installed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
Washington immediately warned that the decision risked “further complicating” talks in Vienna, which have been suspended since March.
The text, tabulated by the US and E3 (United Kingdom, France and Germany) is the first rebuke against Iran at the UN agency since June 2020.
In a joint statement, the four countries “welcomed” the results of the vote and called on Iran to “respect its legal obligations”.
The resolution was approved by 30 members of the Board of Governors meeting in Vienna, with only Russia and China voting against, according to two diplomats interviewed by AFP, according to two diplomats interviewed by AFP. Three countries also abstained (India, Libya and Pakistan).
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett welcomed a “major decision to expose the true face of Iran”, calling it a “warning signal”.
The document calls on Iran to “cooperate” with the IAEA, which in a recent report disappointed the absence of a “technically reliable” answer regarding traces of enriched uranium found at the IAEA. three undeclared locations.
Symbolically significant at this stage, the resolution could be a prelude to referring the dispute to the United Nations Security Council, which is empowered to impose sanctions.
“What a pity”
Mohammad Eslami, head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEIO), said on Wednesday, “Iran has no hidden nuclear activities or unreported locations, and accuses people of The West wants to “maintain maximum pressure” with this “political” resolution.
Even before the vote, Iran disconnected for the day “several cameras” on “nuclear sites” in the country, according to a press release from the IOEA.
“Today, the relevant authorities were instructed to turn off the online enrichment monitoring (OLEM) system and the camera from the agency’s flow meter,” she said.
However, the Iranian organization added that “more than 80% of its existing cameras are operating under the safeguard agreement and will continue to function as before”.
His spokesman, Behrouz Kamalvandi, who went to a site to watch the cameras stop, warned that “other measures are under consideration”.
The move is “extremely regrettable” and “counterproductive”, said a spokesman for US diplomacy interviewed by AFP. “Iran’s response must be in full cooperation” with the IAEA, “without further developing nuclear activities and reducing transparency.”
Since January 2016, the UN police has been conducting verification and monitoring the implementation of Iran’s commitments under the agreement signed last year in Vienna with major powers.
The treaty, known by its English acronym JCPOA, allows the Islamic Republic to ease sanctions in exchange for restrictions on its nuclear program.
However, Washington withdrew from the agreement in 2018 under President Donald Trump, judged the text insufficient and restored economic sanctions on Tehran, in response to gradually freeing itself from the commitments. his end.
The current US President, Joe Biden, has his ardent support for the JCPOA, negotiations begin in April 2021 in Vienna between E3, Russia and China to try to revive it, but it seems increasingly Focus leads to failure. The United States participates indirectly.
In debates before the Council of Governors, London, Paris and Berlin denounced “an ever more advanced nuclear program”, and activities “without credible civil justification”.
According to the latest estimates of the IAEA, Iran will soon accumulate enough 60% enriched uranium to make a bomb.
And Tehran, which denies any military purposes, has informed the agency of its intention to further expand its enrichment capacity on the Natanz site (centre), according to information from the IAEA presented before Council on Wednesday.