Iran diplomat criticizes IAEA

June 6, 2012 at 4:43 PM

VIENNA, June 6 (UPI) -- Iran's ambassador to the U.N. nuclear watchdog accused the agency Wednesday of acting more like an espionage service.

Ali Asghar Soltanieh said the International Atomic Energy Agency depends heavily on information from western intelligence services, the Iran Independent News Service reported. He said they then use that information to demand access to Iranian military sites and experts.

"Unfortunately the agency, which is supposed to be an international technical organization, is somehow playing the role of an intelligence agency," he said.

The Iranian government says its nuclear program is for energy production. In the latest dispute, the IAEA is seeking access to a military base where Iran is suspected of manufacturing triggers for nuclear weapons.

Soltanieh said he hopes the dispute can be resolved in talks Friday in Vienna.

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