UN nuclear agency calls inspection visit to Iran “failure“

The UN nuclear agency has called its latest inspection visit to Iran a failure, as the regime declined access to a key site suspected of hosting covert nuclear weapon research and with no agreement reached over resolution of other issues. 

The statement from the International Atomic Energy Agency came shortly following an Iranian general warning of a pre-emptive strike against any nation that threatened the country.

The statement quoted IAEA chief Yukiya Amano as saying, "We engaged in a constructive spirit but no agreement was reached."

According to the communiqué, Iran refused requests by the IAEA mission to visit Parchin, a military site thought to be used for testing explosives related to triggering a nuclear weapon. Amano said the decision was "disappointing". There was no agreement on "clarification of unresolved issues in connection with Iran's nuclear programme, particularly those relating to possible military dimensions", the statement said.

The fact that the statement was issued today, shortly after midnight and just as IAEA experts left Tehran, bespeaks the urgency the agency attached to announcing the failed outcome. From the language of the statement it was clear that the agency was blaming Tehran for the lack of progress.

Earlier, Iran's semi-official Fars news agency had quoted the deputy head of the Islamic republic's armed forces, Mohammad Hejazi, as saying: "Our strategy now is that if we feel our enemies want to endanger Iran's national interests, and want to decide to do that, we will act without waiting for their actions.