Thursday, August 26, 2004

IAEA will give Iran's nuclear program a clean bill of health in its next report

International News Article | "IAEA will give Iran's nuclear program a clean bill of health in its next report

TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran has cleared up all major outstanding ambiguities over its nuclear program to reassure the world it was not trying to make an atomic bomb, a senior official was quoted as saying on Wednesday.
Washington has accused Iran of running a covert nuclear weapons program under the cover of a civilian atomic energy program. Iran says its ambitions are limited to the peaceful generation of electricity.

A senior Iranian official said the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) would give Iran's nuclear program a clean bill of health in its next report, due to be circulated in the coming days among the members of the IAEA's board of governors.

"The new report is a clear sign of our progress in solving technical ambiguities with the agency," state media quoted Hossein Mousavian, secretary of the foreign policy committee of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, as saying.

Washington has pressured the IAEA to report Iran to the U.N. Security Council, which can impose economic sanctions.

Iran had to explain the origin of traces of highly enriched uranium found at Iranian sites and the purpose of its interest in advanced P2 centrifuges, which can produce bomb-grade uranium twice as quickly as its current centrifuges.

Iran says the traces of enriched uranium were caused by contamination from components bought on the black market. Tehran also says its work on P2 centrifuges, which can be used to make bomb-grade fuel, has not gone further than preliminary stages.

The IAEA's 35-member Board of Governors will meet in September to discuss Iran's nuclear dossier.

Hosseini renewed Iran's call for its nuclear case to be removed from the U.N. nuclear watchdog's agenda afterwards.

"The Americans do not want it because it will create another scandal for American officials before their presidential elections," Hosseini said.

Western and non-aligned diplomats in Vienna said the report would be inconclusive and would neither confirm nor reject the view that Iran has a covert bomb program."


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