EU, US concerned by IAEA report on Iran

Report shows Tehran accelerated uranium enrichment drive; US: Document confirms Iran proceeding in violation of UN.

By REUTERS
February 24, 2012 22:49
1 minute read.
IAEA Nuclear Inspectors [illustrative]

IAEA Insepctiors 311 R. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Both the White House and the European Union released statements expressing concern over a new report from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), showing that Iran has sharply stepped up its controversial uranium enrichment drive.

The IAEA report only confirms that Iran's nuclear program is proceeding in violation of the United Nations and for non-peaceful purposes, the White House said on Friday.

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Tommy Vietor, a spokesman for the White House National Security Council, said the UN nuclear agency's report showed that Iran continued to pursue enrichment in violation of UN Security Council resolutions.

"When combined with its continued stonewalling of international inspectors, Iran's actions demonstrate why Iran has failed to convince the international community that is nuclear program is peaceful," he said in a statement.

In a separate reaction, the European Union's foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said Friday that the report increased concerns over the peaceful purpose of Iran's nuclear program.

Ashton, who represents global powers - the United States, Russia, China, Germany, France and Great Britain - in dealings with Iran, also urged Tehran to cooperate fully with the IAEA.

"The findings of this new IAEA report contribute to further increased concerns on the exclusively peaceful nature of the Iranian nuclear program," Ashton's spokeswoman said in a statement.

"We regret that Iran has not fully co-operated with IAEA's efforts aimed at resolving outstanding issues, including those pointing to possible military dimensions to its nuclear program," Maja Kocijanic said.

"Iran has to address all existing concerns and to build confidence in the nature of its nuclear program."

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), in a confidential document, also reported its failed mission to Tehran this week to try and get Iran to respond to allegations of research relevant for the development of nuclear weapons.

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