EU draft resolution on Iran condemned by Tehran

20th September 2005, Comments 0 comments

20 September 2005, VIENNA/TEHRAN - The European Union has decided to refer the dispute over Iran's nuclear programme to the United Nations security council and the U.N. general assembly, prompting immediate condemnation and a threat to refuse nuclear controls from Tehran.

20 September 2005

VIENNA/TEHRAN - The European Union has decided to refer the dispute over Iran's nuclear programme to the United Nations security council and the U.N. general assembly, prompting immediate condemnation and a threat to refuse nuclear controls from Tehran.

The bloc released a draft resolution Tuesday which was to be presented to the 35-member governing body of the U.N.'s nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna, later on the same day.

The draft resolution calls on the IAEA to report Iran's numerous violations and delays concerning its obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to the U.N. security council and general assembly.

In a first response, Iran's chief nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani said in a press conference in Tehran Iran would resist any ultimatum by the E.U. and consider quitting the IAEA additional protocol, thereby banning international nuclear inspections in the country.

"But if threats continue, then Iran would be forced to avail itself of the option to revise its stance on the IAEA additional protocol and also see no need for any international concessions over uranium enrichment," he warned.

The draft resolution, which was available in parts to Deutsche Presse-Agentur, came after ElBaradei also urged Iran to show "more transparency" in regards to its nuclear programme.

IAEA director Mohammed ElBaradei should "report to all members of the agency and the security council and the general assembly of the United Nations under article 12c of the agency's statue Iran's many failures and breaches of its obligations to comply" with the NPT and its additional protocol, according to the draft declaration.

Despite Brussels' move, however, leading countries such as Russia and representatives of the non-aligned countries continue to be opposed to the involvement of the security council.

As the panel with the highest authority in the United Nations the security council can impose sanctions or even authorize the use of force against a country.

In the IAEA governing body, 15 out of 35 member states oppose a referral to the U.N.. It was therefore possible that the vote on the draft resolution would not take place until a later stage, observers said.

E.U. diplomats told DPA Tuesday that the draft resolution was intended to make clear that - unlike the row over North Korea's nuclear programme - the "case Iran" was remaining under the authority of the IAEA.

Larijani, however, demanded that Iran should be treated like North Korea: "After years of threats and political pressure, the West has finally accepted the civilian nuclear programme of North Korea."

"We have the same demand, and the West should accept our demand for peaceful nuclear technology as well," said Larijani, who is also secretary of the Supreme National Security Council.

The main purpose of the draft resolution was to apply the political weight of the U.N. to kickstart the stalled negotiation between Iran and the so-called E.U. trio, including Germany, France and Britain, the E.U. diplomats said.

In the draft, the E.U. accuses Teheran in unusually forceful words of "extensive concealment" and of providing "misleading information and delays in access to material and facilities", which the IAEA governing body had "deplored" on earlier occasions.

The security council should make clear to Tehran that the remaining open questions could best be solved by confidence-building measures.

In contradiction to its membership in the Non-Proliferation Treaty, Iran had secretly run a nuclear programme for about 18 years. The E.U. trio has been in talks with Iran since October 2003 to move Tehran to halt its plans for uranium enrichment.

Depending on its grade, enriched uranium can be used either as fuel for nuclear power plants or for the production of nuclear weapons.

Negotiations between the E.U. and Iran on a cooperation treatment stalled in August after Iran had resumed its uranium processing, preparing uranium for enrichment in its nuclear plant in Isfahan.

DPA

Subject: German news

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