International Atomic Energy Agency to visit Iran

Iran said on Monday that the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will visit Tehran “in the coming days.”

President of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Mohammad Eslami officially invited IAEA chief Rafael Grossi to visit Iran, Iran’s official news agency IRNA quoted AEOI spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi as saying.

Over the past few days, the AEOI had held “constructive and promising” talks with an IAEA delegation headed by its Deputy Director General and head of the Department of Safeguards Massimo Aparo and negotiated Grossi’s visit to Iran, according to Kamalvandi.

Kamalvandi said he hoped that the upcoming visit by the chief of the international nuclear watchdog would prepare the ground for further cooperation between Iran and the IAEA and a brighter future for their relations.

Over the past few months, the IAEA has criticized Iran for its lack of cooperation with the agency. On Nov. 17, 2022, the IAEA’s Board of Governors passed a resolution proposed by the United States, Britain, France, and Germany that called on Iran to collaborate with the agency’s investigators regarding the alleged “traces of uranium” at a number of its “undeclared” sites. Iran has repeatedly rejected such allegations.

On Feb. 19, Bloomberg cited two senior diplomats as claiming that IAEA inspectors in Iran had detected uranium enriched to levels “just below that needed for a nuclear weapon.” On the same day, Kamalvandi was quoted by IRNA as saying that the Bloomberg report was a “distortion of the facts” and part of a smear campaign. ■

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