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Iran's nuclear program unhindered by sanctions: IAEA

Source: Radio Zamaneh

Yukiya Amano, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), says Iran continues to enrich uranium at a steady rate and international sanctions have not had any evident effect on Iran's nuclear activities.

Reuters reports that Yukiya Amano's latest report confirms the opinion of a number of analysts who claim economic pressures have not been successful in stopping Iran's nuclear program.

Amano's statements come a day before senior officials representing the G5+1 meet in Brussels to agree on their strategy toward Iran.

In his first press conference following his re-election, U.S. President Barack Obama claimed that he plans to press for a diplomatic solution to resolve nuclear disputes with Iran.

International sanctions on Iran, especially those spearheaded by the U.S. and the EU in the past year, have put Iran's economy under severe strain, causing rising inflation and a steep fall in the value of the national currency.

Iran has steadily maintained that its uranium enrichment activities are for the peaceful purpose of providing fuel for its research nuclear reactor used to produce medical isotopes.

Iran calls for positive approaches at nuclear talks

Iran has once again declared its willingness to alleviate the International Atomic Energy Agency's concerns regarding its nuclear program in the new round of talks, adding that it hopes the agency will also bring "a positive approach" to the negotiations.

Ramin Mehmanparast, the spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry, said on Tuesday November 20 that Islamic Republic officials are concerned that Iran's "absolute rights" may be disregarded and political concerns could blur technical issues.

The IAEA is scheduled to start a new round of talks with Iran on December 13.

Reza Sajadi, the Iranian ambassador to Moscow, announced that Iran has already informed the Russian foreign minister that Iran is prepared to recommence negotiations with the IAEA. He told Ria Novosti he hopes that influential countries will stop holding Iran to a double standard and allow the negotiations to reach a solution.

He especially called for a change in the behaviour and approach taken by the United States and President Barack Obama with regard to Iran.

Mehmanparast said the Islamic Republic is looking for practical changes in the U.S. approach because Iran has never pursued the development of nuclear weapons, and the White House must refrain from saying that Iran's nuclear program is geared toward weapons production.

The foreign ministry spokesman said Iran has continuously announced its readiness to negotiate with the IAEA in a framework that recognizes Iran's right to carry out peaceful nuclear activities and have access to full cycles of fuel for its reactor.

He stressed the G5+1 has taken the wrong approach so far by imposing sanctions and he proposed that world powers should take "wise and logical" steps to resolve the nuclear disputes.

The U.S. and the EU have imposed widespread sanctions on Iran's oil and financial sectors in the past year, which has had a profound impact on the Iranian economy, reducing the country's ability to sell its oil and carry out international financial transactions.

... Payvand News - 11/21/12 ... --

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