VIENNA — The chief of the UN nuclear watchdog agency
said Monday he cannot confirm all of Iran's nuclear activities are
peaceful, carefully choosing his words after tensions were sparked by
his recent suggestion that Teheran may be working on a secret arms
Members of the 35-nation International Atomic Energy
Agency (IAEA) board were closely following IAEA head Yukiya Amano's statement
opening the March board session to see if he would follow up on his
hard-hitting Iran report issued last week.
In that document,
Amano — who took the post in December — expressed concern that Iran may
be working on making a nuclear warhead, suggesting for the first time
that Teheran had either resumed such work or never stopped at the time
US intelligence thought it did.
The Japanese diplomat was more circumspect in his
comments Monday, devoting only four paragraphs to Iran in eight pages
of comments. His assessment that the agency "cannot confirm that all
nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities" was notably less
forceful than the central finding of his report.
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