Friday, August 12, 2005
In a nationally broadcast radio sermon by former Iranian president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani on Friday, he said of the U. N. watchdog group adopting the resolution for Iran to stop nuclear enrichment activities, “The decision was a cruel one.”
The Thurday adoption in Vienna by the governing board of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) was unanimous and legally non-binding in asking Iran to suspend all nuclear fuel related activities. The board also requested a report from the agency’s chief, Mohamed ElBaradei, on its compliance by Tehran.
On Thursday, an Iranian member of their nuclear negotiating team, Sirous Nasseri, read in London a statement made by his republic at the emergency governing board meeting of the IAEA regarding the Nuclear proliferation treaty (NPT):
How can this body be called to react to an act, which is in full conformity with the NPT and the safeguards and constitutes a limited manifestation of the exercise of an inalienable right? A right, which by its own simple meaning, cannot be alienated from anyone.
IAEA spokeswoman Melissa Fleming, said yesterday, “The resolution on Iran was just adopted without a vote, by consensus. So, full consensus. All 35 members of the board agreed to the language of the resolution text.”
International concern over the Iranian nuclear enrichment program was led by the European Union countries of France, Great Britain, and Germany (EU-3), along with the United States. The pressure brought by these nations succeeded in obtaining language calling for the re-instatement of seals that were removed at the Uranium Conversion Facility in Isfahan. The seals were removed during the recent installation of surveillance cameras by IAEA.
The agency is to monitor Tehran for compliance to halt uranium enrichment. After a September 3 deadline, Iran again faces a possible referral to the U.N. Security Council where it could be subject to economic sanctions.
Meanwhile, the United States is likely to grant an entry visa to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to attend the United Nations opening session next month in New York City, New York.
The Bush administration probe into whether Ahmadinejad was connected to the 1979-1981 Iranian hostage crisis is looking like it was a case of mistaken identity. The decision remains tentative as intelligence reports within the administration continue to circulate, according to The Washington Post citing U.S. officials.