By Press TV
By Hassan Beheshtipour
The publication of the latest International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report on Iran’s nuclear activities, circulated to member states on February 24, 2012, runs contrary to the statute of the UN nuclear watchdog which states that IAEA reports must not be broadcast, rewritten or redistributed prior to their official publication.
Nevertheless, IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano released his report on Iran’s peaceful atomic program irrespective of such principles in order to help Western media outlets in their propaganda campaign against Iran. What comes as a surprise is that no party in the IAEA Secretariat — headed by the IAEA’s Director General – has ever raised any objection to the conduct, and demanded an explanation for the publication of the contents of the report on Iran before its circulation among the IAEA members.
The recent IAEA report on Iran reiterates the peaceful nature of the nuclear activities of the Islamic Republic about which the UN nuclear watchdog has been informed. Nonetheless, the IAEA demands Iran to stand by its commitments regarding the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and its safeguards, and also allow its experts to inspect non-nuclear Iranian installations. Iran, in return, has turned down the request for two main reasons:
Firstly, the IAEA, under the NPT safeguards, is solely tasked with the inspection of certain nuclear facilities and cannot look over the installations that have nothing to do with nuclear activities.
Secondly, Iran, in a confidence-building move, allowed IAEA experts to inspect the Parchin military site in 2005. Then IAEA Chief Mohamed ElBaradei stated in his report that no nuclear activity was being conducted in the site.
By this, one can draw the conclusion that nothing but looking for excuses accounts for IAEA’s push to re-inspect the Parchin military site nearly seven years after the first inspection made by the UN nuclear watchdog’s experts.
IAEA officials maintain that they must be given unrestricted access to inspect Iran’s nuclear sites under an additional protocol to the NPT, which Tehran signed in 2003. Based on the protocol, the UN nuclear watchdog is calling on Iran to allow IAEA inspectors to re-visit the Parchin military site to clear the existing ambiguities over the venue.
It is worth mentioning that Iran’s Majlis has yet to give its consent to the addition of the protocol to the NPT, and that the Islamic Republic cannot cooperate with the IAEA within the framework of this protocol.
Iran’s ambassador to the IAEA, Ali Asghar Soltanieh, has meanwhile dismissed allegations about the Parchin military site through providing the UN nuclear watchdog with ample and convincing evidence that no nuclear activity is pursued in the place.
“The usual inspections of Iran’s nuclear facilities are continuously made based on the NPT framework. The nuclear agency’s request to visit the Parchin [military] site is different from the usual inspections. Calls for the removal of some questions and ambiguities by the IAEA require an agreement on a framework which caters for the considerations of both parties.”
It’s clear that Iran has some conditions for the inspection of its military sites that will have to be met in the framework of a mutual agreement. In other words, Iran and a hundred other IAEA members who have not yet approved the NPT’s Additional Protocol cannot open their military sites, which are not in any way related to nuclear activities, to inspectors who accept no obligations to keep the results of the meetings confidential.
Iran has repeatedly made the important point over the past years that countries which accept international obligations, receive bonuses for upgrading their cooperation level. If states like Iran were to accept international obligations by centers of power and do not gain any benefit in return, and even suffer from the pressures of increasing sanctions, how can IAEA Chief Yukiya Amano and his colleagues expect the governments of these countries to find a logical response to the questions raised by the public regarding the one-way cooperation? The cooperation will only bear more obligations for them.
Thus, the issue of visiting the Parchin military site was only a propaganda tool in the hands of Western media to imply to their readers that as Iran doesn’t permit inspections of the site, some illegal activities must be taking place there. This is while the IAEA reports since 2003 insist that all of Iran’s nuclear activities have been under the agency’s supervision and none have diverted from their NPT obligations. They also attest to the fact that one cannot question Iran’s peaceful nuclear activities based on Tel Aviv’s claims and Washington’s enforced policies.
In his report, Amano stressed that the UN Security Council resolutions against Iran’s uranium enrichment activities were not being implemented. This is while, based on various articles of the UN charter, Iran sees the resolutions as illegal and unjust.
According to the 30 reports so far released by IAEA, Iran’s peaceful uranium enrichment activities are under close watch of the agency’s inspectors and pose no threat to international peace and security. Therefore, it has been only through pressure of the US and Israel that seven resolutions against Iran have been unilaterally adopted by the Security Council, four of which have imposed extensive sanctions against the Iranian people. Meanwhile, the United States, Canada, and the European Union accompanied with Japan, South Korea and Australia have imposed even tougher sanctions outside the framework of the Security Council’s resolutions on the Iranian people which have nothing to do with Iran’s activities for the development of the nuclear energy and enrichment of uranium.
The latest instance of sanctions was the recent ban on Iranian crude imports and transactions with Iran’s central bank. Although not fully enforced yet, these sanctions have already caused many problems for global markets. How Mr. Amano expects the Iranian government to stop uranium enrichment under such unfair conditions?
That part of Amano’s report which highlights the nuclear achievements of Iran and shows that despite the sanctions, Islamic Republic has been able to successfully produce nuclear fuel rods to feed them into Tehran Research Reactor and manufacture anti-cancer medication, is very promising and will delight the people who understand the concept of hegemonic system and enjoy the pleasure of challenging the monopolistic systems in scientific terms. In parallel, those who claimed until that it would not be possible for Iran to produce nuclear fuel rod, have been put to shame by Mr. Amano’s report and are upset.
In another part of the report where Amano says that Iran is not following the Security Council’s resolutions as it has not yet suspended uranium enrichment is just repetition of past claims. Insisting that Iran should allow the inspection of more centers outside its obligations to the Non-Proliferation Treaty and simply on the basis of the Additional Protocol will get nowhere and will only provide feed for anti-Iranian propaganda. Such claims are at odds with the essence of the agency’s Statute which clearly states that the main goal of IAEA is to control and supervise nuclear activities of the countries to promote peaceful application of the nuclear energy.
It seems that the agency would be able to easily forge an agreement with Iran on the basis of a model similar to the previous modality plan only if it would relieve the pressure of hegemonic powers which seek to have a monopoly on high-end technologies, including the nuclear energy. This can also help both sides find practical ways to dispel the existing questions posed about Iran’s peaceful nuclear program.