Iran warns UN nuclear watchdog

Newly elected parliamentary speaker Ali Larijani calls IAEA report a "deception".

    Larijani served as Iran's highest nuclear negotiator
    between 2005 and 2007 [EPA]

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    The report, issued on Monday, expressed "serious concern" that Iran might be withholding information needed to establish whether it tried to make nuclear weapons.
    "If they want more sincere co-operation with Iran, they need to have more balanced reports and not look to create a media frenzy," Larijani said.
    Nuclear concerns
    Washington and its allies had responded to the IAEA report saying it underlined concerns about the aims of the Iranian nuclear programme.
    "There are a number of different questions out there about the military's involvement in this nuclear programme, about Iran's efforts to fabricate hemispheres of uranium," Sean McCormack, the US state department spokesman, said.
    The US and some European states accuse Iran of trying to make an atomic weapon.
    Tehran insists its nuclear programme is entirely peaceful.
    The UN Security Council has imposed three sets of sanctions against Iran for its refusal to halt enriching uranium, a process that can be used to generate electricity or nuclear weapons.
    Iran has previously described its co-operation with the IAEA as positive, suggesting it was providing information requested by agency officials and going beyond its obligations under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
    But Tehran ended all voluntary co-operation with the IAEA, including allowing snap inspections of its nuclear facilities, in February 2006 after being reported to the UN Security Council.
    The treaty does not require Iran to allow short notice intrusive inspections of its facilities.
    Political influence
    Larijani was elected to the position of parliamentary speaker on Wednesday, without any contest, after being chosen by the dominant conservative faction as their candidate.
    Analysts said Larijani's comments in his first speech to Iran's 287-member assembly show he intends to be a powerful and active speaker.
    He served as Iran's senior nuclear negotiator between 2005 and 2007, holding several rounds of talks with the EU, before resigning due to differences with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian president.
    Even before his election to the post of speaker, he retained an influence on nuclear policy as the representative of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's supreme leader, on Iran's supreme national security council.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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