Ali Larijani says Iran will not
deviate towards nuclear weapons [AP]

Following are events since Iran's nuclear programme first came to light. Iran says the programme is peaceful, but the West fears it is attempting to produce nuclear weapons.

 

2002

 

August: The National Council of Resistance of Iran, the exiled opposition, reports uranium enrichment facility at Natanz and heavy water plant at Arak.

   

2003

 

June: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report says Iran failed to comply with nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

   

December: Iran signs protocol allowing snap inspections of nuclear facilities.

   

2005

 

February: Mohammad Khatami, Iran's president, says no government will give up nuclear technology programme.

 

September 2: IAEA report confirms Iran has resumed uranium conversion at Isfahan.

   

2006

 

January 10: Iran removes UN seals at Natanz enrichment plant and resumes nuclear fuel research.

   

February 4: IAEA votes to report Iran to UN Security Council. Iran ends UN inspections the next day. Ten days later, Iran restarts small-scale feeding of uranium gas into centrifuges.

   

March 8: IAEA report to Security Council says it cannot verify Iran's atomic activities are peaceful.

   

April 11: Iran says it has produced low-grade enriched uranium suitable for use in power stations; IAEA confirms this.

   

April 28: IAEA report to the Security Council confirms Iran has flouted council demands to suspend enrichment.

   

July 31: Security Council demands Iran suspend nuclear activities by August 31. Council makes first legally binding demands in resolution and threatens sanctions.

   

August 31: IAEA announces Iran has not met deadline to suspend programme and has resumed enriching uranium.

   

September 26: Russia and Iran agree start-up date of September 2007 for Iran's first nuclear power station at Bushehr.

   

November 14: Confidential IAEA report says Iran still enriching uranium and stalling investigations despite risk of sanctions. Report says Iran has started experimental chain of 164 linked centrifuges, feeding uranium gas into them for enrichment.

   

December 23: Security Council votes for sanctions and gives 60 days to suspend enrichment. Iran calls resolution illegal measure.

 

2007

  

January 22: Iran bars entry to 38 IAEA inspectors after hardliners demand retaliation for sanctions.

   

February 19: Russia announces delay in work at Bushehr, citing non-payments worth $73.75m.

   

February 20: Ali Larijani, Iran's chief negotiator, says Iran will give guarantees there will be no deviation towards nuclear weapons.

   

February 21: A 60-day grace period to stop enrichment expires.

   

February 22: IAEA says Iran has installed two cascades of 164 centrifuges in Natanz with another two almost completed.

   

March 14: US, British, French, German, Russian and Chinese diplomats at the UN reach a tentative deal on imposing fresh sanctions on Iran. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad dismisses any new sanctions resolution the next day as "a torn piece of paper".

 

April 9: During a visit to the Natanz nuclear facility, at a speech marking the first anniversary of Iran's enrichment of uranium, Ahmadinejad announces that the country has joined "the countries that produce nuclear fuel on an industrial scale".

Source: Agencies