International Atomic Energy Agency chief visits Iran
Monday 21 May 2012
The head of the UN nuclear agency flew to Tehran on a delicate mission that - if successful - could finally lift the veil on whether Iran is seeking atomic arms while strengthening the Islamic Republic's negotiating hand in crucial nuclear talks with six world powers later in the week.
The trip by International Atomic Energy Agency chief Yukiya Amano is focused on getting agreement from Iran to terms that will allow the agency to resume probing whether Tehran secretly worked on nuclear arms.
Even if that happens, Western diplomats have expressed scepticism that Iran will honour a deal. But with both Iran and the IAEA reporting progress in a previous round last week, anticipation was high as Mr Amano prepared to board his flight to Tehran.
While expressing some optimism, Mr Amano said he could not predict whether he would clinch a deal that would allow his agency to renew its long-stalled probe.
“Nothing is certain in life, in diplomacy,” he told reporters at Vienna's airport. “But there has been good progress.
“I really think this is the right time to reach agreement.”
The one-day trip is significant both for what it can achieve in terms of probing Iran's secretive nuclear programme and as a mood-setter for talks in Baghdad between Iran and the United States, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany.
The latter six nations are in the forefront of trying to persuade Tehran to curb its nuclear programme and ease concerns it wants to use it to make nuclear weapons.
- 1 Scottish referendum: So how about the English now being given a chance to split from England?
- 4 Matthew Miller: American sentenced to hard labour in North Korea 'wanted to be Snowden II'
- 5 Iranian blogger found guilty of insulting Prophet Mohammad on Facebook sentenced to death
Stamford Hill council removes 'unacceptable' posters telling women which side of the road to walk down
Kim Kardashian 'naked pictures' leaked on 4chan weeks after Jennifer Lawrence 'The Fappening' scandal
Isis in Syria: 60,000 Kurds flee terror in new exodus
Iranian blogger found guilty of insulting Prophet Mohammad on Facebook sentenced to death
4Chan naked photos leak: Celebrity Twitter reactions to the mass breach of privacy
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'
Unpaid Voluntary Position : Reach Volunteering: Volunteer your expertise as Tr...
£68 - £73 per day + Competitive rates of pay based on experience: Randstad Edu...
£69 - £73 per day + Competitive London rates of pay: Randstad Education Group:...
£117 - £157 per day + Competitive London rates: Randstad Education Group: * Pr...