On Sunday, it was announced that Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) reached an agreement over monitoring activities of Iranian nuclear sites by the UN nuclear watchdog body. The deal came following the IAEA’s chief Rafael Grossi’s last-minute visit to Tehran, where he met with Iran’s newly appointed nuclear agency head Mohammad Eslami.
According to the deal, “the agency has been permitted to service the identified equipment and replace their storage media, which will be kept in Iran, and the way and timing agreed by the two sides. The agreement came ahead of the agency’s 35-countries Board of Governors’ meeting which would be held this week.
The agreement has also raised of hopes regarding the resumption of the stalled nuclear talks in Vienna. Indeed, Tehran affirmed that the Iranian delegation would attend to the upcoming round of the nuclear talks in Vienna. It was also stated that the IAEA’s chief would visit Tehran soon for high level consultations over current issues of mutual interest.
Defining the agreement as “constructive,” Grossi, however, noted that “This is not a permanent solution, this cannot be a permanent solution. This has always been seen, for me at least, as a stopgap, as a measure to allow time for diplomacy.”
Speaking to reporters following his landing at Vienna airport, Grossi added, “We managed to rectify the most urgent issue: The imminent loss of knowledge we were confronted with until yesterday. Now we have a solution.”
Grossi also stated that the monitoring equipment would be serviced within a few days. He also added that cameras that had been broken and removed from a centrifuge workshop as a result of a suspected sabotaged in June, would be replaced, as well.
With this agreement, a possible anti-Iran resolution that might be taken at the upcoming the IAEA Board of Governors meeting seems to be prevented.
Last week, the IAEA stated that Iran has resumed increasing its stockpile of enriched uranium, which could be used in producing nuke weapons. The agency also accused Iran of undermining its monitoring activities by disallowing overseer access to the nuclear sites.
In return, Iran’s permanent representative to the UN, Kazem Gharib Abadi, responded by saying that “no one can tell” Tehran to stop its nuclear activities as long as US sanctions remain in place.