Iran rejects U.S. demands for inspectors' access to nuclear sites

By Allen Cone
Iran rejects U.S. demands for inspectors' access to nuclear sites
Technicians monitor activities at a nuclear facility in Isfahan, Iran. Tuesday, Tehran said it will not grant U.N. inspectors access to some facilities as part of the 2015 nuclear agreement. UPI Photo/File | License Photo

Aug. 29 (UPI) -- Iranian officials have rejected U.S. demands for United Nations inspectors to visit Tehran's military sites, which is part of the landmark 2015 nuclear deal.

"The Americans should take the dream of being able to inspect our military sites, be it under the pretext of the [agreement] or based on any other justification, to the grave," Akbar Velayati, a senior adviser to Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khameneii, told reporters.


"The Islamic Republic of Iran, which is the pivot of resistance in the region, will not allow the Americans and non-Americans to inspect [its] military sites, which are a crucial and strategic part of national security," he added.

Last week, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley urged the International Atomic Energy Agency to seek access to Iranian military sites as part of the deal, formally titled the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action -- which was backed by the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China.

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The U.N. Security Council also adopted Resolution 2231, which endorses the nuclear pact.

President Donald Trump had dispatched Haley to Vienna, Austria, to meet with the U.N. nuclear chief on Iran's compliance with the agreement.


Iranian spokesman Mohammad Baqer Nobakht also denounced the inspection idea.

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"Iran's military facilities are secret [sites], and not everybody can have access to them," Nobakht said at a weekly press conference Tuesday.

Nobakht said maintaining restricted access is in the country's national interests.

Last week, Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Haley's visit to the IAEA undermines "the independence and credibility" of agency inspectors.

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Although Trump has denounced the nuclear agreement, which was nurtured by President Barack Obama, he has twice so far certified Iran's compliance with the deal.

Earlier this month, Trump signed legislation to strengthen sanctions against Russia, North Korea and Iran.

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