Tehran: The Iranian Parliament Sunday called to to limit cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), even though a resolution is in sight regarding talks with the US about ending sanctions linked to Tehran’s nuclear programme.
“The IAEA had three months to fulfil its obligations, it did not do so and the deadline expired yesterday (Saturday),” Parliament Speaker Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf said Sunday.
Accordingly, the UN agency should no longer have access to pictures of and information from Iran’s nuclear facilities, dpa news agency quoted Ghalibaf as saying. IAEA chief Rafael Grossi said he would make a statement later Sunday.
Under an interim agreement reached between Tehran and the IAEA at the end of February, full monitoring of Iran’s nuclear facilities would only start when the 2015 Vienna nuclear deal was implemented, and US sanctions lifted.
Iran would continue to allow the agency to monitor, but not within the framework of the so-called IAEA Additional Protocol and, accordingly, only in a very limited way. Ghalibaf’s statements are seen by observers as part of an internal power struggle that has been going on for months ahead of the presidential election June 18.
The hardliners believe that an international agreement in the nuclear dispute before the election could harm their chances of victory. Moderate forces around President Hassan Rouhani are pushing for a deal, as they say this could lead to an end to US sanctions and the economic crisis that has lasted for more than two years.
Intensive negotiations between Iran and the five parties to the Vienna nuclear agreement have been going on in Vienna for more than a month. According to Rouhani, an agreement is imminent.