Monday, January 10, 2005

Iran's membership in nuclear fuel cycle group important: MP

Iran's membership in nuclear fuel cycle group important: MP: "Iran’s membership in nuclear fuel cycle group important: MP
TEHRAN, Jan. 10 (MNA) -- Iran’s representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Piruz Husseini, said here on Monday that technical experts are not the only representatives of member states at the Expert Group on Multilateral Approaches to the Nuclear Fuel Cycle because legal and political figures are also representatives.
Foreign ministry diplomats from various countries, nuclear experts, and an expert on nuclear rights are attending the group’s current session in Vienna, which started on Monday, Husseini told the Mehr News Agency.

He said that so far the group, which is led by a Swiss expert, has held two meetings and is scheduled to hold a fourth meeting in February.

The third session of the Expert Group of Multilateral Approaches to the Nuclear Fuel Cycle concludes on January 14.

The session is being attended by experts and diplomats from Canada, the United States, Brazil, Argentina, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Sweden, Spain, France, Germany, Japan, China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Australia, Malaysia, Kazakhstan, and Iran.

Iranian nuclear negotiator Sirus Naseri, who heads the Iran-EU joint nuclear working group, is also attending the talks after having been officially invited by IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei.

Meanwhile, MP Kazem Jalali, the rapporteur of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Committee, stressed that Iran’s membership in the IAEA nuclear fuel cycle group is important and can be effective.

Until recently, the IAEA director general had not invited Iran to join the nuclear fuel cycle group, despite the country’s request to become a member, Jalali told MNA on Monday.

However, the Europeans agreed in the Paris Pact (signed between Iran and the EU in November) to support Iran’s membership in the group, he said, adding, “This is one of the achievements Iran has gained from negotiations with Europe.”

Elsewhere in his remarks, the MP noted that some countries will seek to restrict the nuclear activities of countries which lack nuclear fuel at the IAEA’s next review conference, which is due to be held in spring 2005.

Referring to the remarks made by U.S. President George W. Bush in February 2004, Jalali said that the U.S. has called for dividing the world into two groups, namely countries with access to the nuclear fuel cycle and those that lack the technology, so that the former can export the fuel to the latter.

ElBaradei recently proposed halting the programs of countries active in the process of accessing the nuclear fuel cycle by asking them to observe a five-year moratorium on the construction of facilities for uranium enrichment and nuclear reprocessing, he added.

“So, under the current circumstances, our membership in the IAEA nuclear fuel cycle group, which will make one of the most important decisions on the issue, is very significant and can be effective,” he stated."

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