UN nuclear watchdog chief visits Iran’s Parchin military site
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UN nuclear watchdog chief visits Iran’s Parchin military site

Rouhani calls for ‘fair inspections’ as Yukiya Amano arrives in Tehran for second visit in three months

IAEA chief Yukiya Amano meets with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani (right) in Tehran on September 20, 2015. (YouTube screen capture)
IAEA chief Yukiya Amano meets with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani (right) in Tehran on September 20, 2015. (YouTube screen capture)

The head of the United Nations nuclear watchdog on Sunday made a ceremonial visit to the Parchin military site, Iran’s official news agency says.

The IRNA news agency quoted Behrouz Kamalvandi, a spokesman for Iran’s atomic agency, as saying that Yukiya Amano “visited workshops and nearby construction sites in the complex.”

The International Atomic Energy Agency has long sought greater access to Parchin, where Iran is alleged to have carried out tests in the past related to the development of nuclear weapons. Iran allowed IAEA inspectors to visit twice in 2005.

Iran denies ever seeking atomic weapons, and says Parchin is a conventional military site.

Amano, the head of the IAEA, arrived in Iran on Sunday for his second visit since the Islamic Republic reached a nuclear agreement with world powers in July.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told Amano during his visit that the IAEA should be “fair” in its implementation of the nuclear deal, according to a report on Rouhani’s website.

Amano is in Tehran to discuss outstanding issues before implementation.

“Under the deal, we will voluntarily carry the additional protocol and we hope you have a fair observation on implementation of the deal,” Rouhani told Amano. “The agency will have an effective role in implementation of the deal.”

The Iranian president also reiterated that Iran has no intention of developing a nuclear weapon. “Over the past years and during monitoring and snap inspections by the agency [it is] persisted [sic] that Iran has had no diversion from its peaceful nuclear program,” he said.

In this May 12, 2015 file photo, UN nuclear chief Yukiya Amano from Japan speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in Vienna, Austria. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak, File)
UN nuclear chief Yukiya Amano from Japan speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in Vienna, Austria, May 12, 2015. (AP/Ronald Zak, File)

Amano replied that his agency’s work in Iran and elsewhere is “based on impartiality and persisting on facts.”

The visit comes less than a month before an Oct. 15 deadline to gather information on allegations that Iran had in the past tried to build atomic weapons. A final UN assessment is due in December.

The West suspects Iran’s nuclear program has a secret military dimension. Iran denies the charge saying its nuclear activities have peaceful purposes like power generation and cancer treatment.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press.

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