Iran, IAEA agree to further talks

Jan. 10, 2014 at 12:22 PM
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TEHRAN, Jan. 10 (UPI) -- Iran's top nuclear administrator said Friday he was interested in further cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency.

"Iran and the agency will end phase one of the negotiations by early February, and the second phase of Iran-IAEA talks will start soon afterward," Ali Akbar Salehi, director of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, was quoted as saying Friday by state-funded broadcaster Press TV.

Under the terms of a November deal reached with the IAEA, Iran agreed to let inspectors survey some of its nuclear facilities.

U.N. nuclear inspectors were denied access to the Parchin facility in 2012. The IAEA said it was concerned about the goal of the work under way at site near Tehran although Iran has said inspectors had failed to convince it a visit to the complex was necessary.

Salehi's announcement came as Iran's chief nuclear negotiator, Abbas Araqchi, announced talks with foreign diplomats in Geneva, Switzerland, were successful in resolving outstanding issues left over from breakthrough talks in November.

Iran, under the terms of the interim deal reached in November, curbs some of its nuclear activity in exchange for modest relief from Western economic sanctions.

Araqchi provided few specifics about the Friday talks, Press TV reported. A formal announcement regarding the multilateral talks is expected in a few days, he said.

Iran is suspected of pursuing the technology needed to produce a nuclear weapon, an allegation it denies.

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