Iran and UN nuclear regulators agree to meet again
Iran and the U.N. nuclear agency have ended two days of talks in Vienna with an agreement to meet again next week to discuss international concerns about Iran's controversial nuclear program.
The chief U.N. and Iranian negotiators said Tuesday the two sides will hold another meeting in the Austrian capital on Monday. International Atomic Energy Agency chief inspector Herman Nackaerts said he had a "good exchange of views" with Iranian officials during discussions whose "primary focus was how to clarify issues related to possible military dimensions to the Iranian nuclear program."
Iran denies Western accusations that it is secretly developing nuclear weapons under cover of a civilian energy project. Iranian ambassador to the IAEA Ali Asghar Soltanieh described the Vienna talks as "fruitful" and said next Monday's meeting is aimed at "working towards a conclusion" of the issue.
On Monday, the IAEA again urged Iran to give it access to the sites, people and documents it seeks as part of its probe into whether Tehran is trying to develop nuclear weapons.
Iran has barred the U.N. nuclear agency from accessing the Parchin military site near Tehran. Western officials suspect Iran has built a container there that could house nuclear explosives tests and accuse Tehran of trying to remove incriminating evidence before allowing U.N. inspectors inside the facility. Iran has dismissed the allegations as being "childish" and "ridiculous."
The five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany have been following the Vienna talks closely ahead of a higher-level meeting with Iranian officials in Baghdad next week. The six powers known as P5+1 are trying to assess the possible military capability of Iran's nuclear sites.