05262018Sat

U.N. nuclear inspectors in Iran, no sign of Parchin visit

Reuters: Inspectors from the U.N. nuclear watchdog arrived in Tehran on Thursday to hold talks over Iran's disputed nuclear program but there was no sign they would gain access to the Parchin military complex as requested.

DUBAI (Reuters) - Inspectors from the U.N. nuclear watchdog arrived in Tehran on Thursday to hold talks over Iran's disputed nuclear program but there was no sign they would gain access to the Parchin military complex as requested.

The Iranian Students' News Agency (ISNA) said "no plans were announced yet for inspectors to visit Iran's nuclear facilities or other sites", without giving a source.

Thursday's talks in Tehran are the first such meeting between the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Iran since August.

ISNA said the seven-member IAEA delegation headed by Deputy Director General Herman Nackaerts would meet Iranian nuclear officials.

Israel has threatened military action if diplomacy and economic sanctions intended to halt Iran's uranium enrichment program fail to resolve the longstanding dispute.

Iran has denied that its nuclear program has military aims and has threatened to strike Israeli and U.S. targets in the region if it is attacked.

The IAEA wants an agreement that would enable its inspectors to visit a military complex, Parchin, and other sites that it suspects may be linked to what it has called the "possible military dimensions" to Iran's nuclear program.

The nuclear watchdog believes Iran has conducted explosives tests with possible nuclear applications at Parchin, a sprawling facility southeast of Tehran, and has repeatedly asked for access.

Iran says Parchin is a conventional military site and has dismissed allegations that it has tried to clean up the site before any visit.

(Reporting by Zahra Hosseinian; Editing by Kevin Liffey)

 

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