Reuters: Three European heavyweights accused Iran on Wednesday of trying to intimidate the U.N.’s atomic watchdog by barring some of its nuclear inspectors.
VIENNA, Sept 15 (Reuters) – Three European heavyweights accused Iran on Wednesday of trying to intimidate the U.N.’s atomic watchdog by barring some of its nuclear inspectors.
In a statement during a closed-door board meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), France, Germany and Britain voiced concern about what they called Iran’s growing failure to cooperate with the U.N. body.
“Iran’s refusal to fully cooperate with the IAEA and its deliberate attempts to prevent it from carrying out its mandate in Iranian territory are … troubling and reprehensible,” a copy of the statement read out by a French envoy said.
“The Iranian authorities are clearly attempting to intimidate the agency so as to influence its ability to report to the board and undermine its ability to effectively implement the safeguards regime in its territory,” it said.
The West suspects Iran’s nuclear programme is aimed at developing bombs. Iran rejects the charge, saying its work is aimed at generating electricity. Tehran says two U.N. inspectors it barred in June provided false information about its nuclear activities. The IAEA says it has full confidence in their professionalism and impartiality. (Reporting by Fredrik Dahl and Sylvia Westall; Editing by Louise Ireland)