Iran has described the resolution on its nuclear work passed by the Board of Governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) as “hasty and undue” and has rejected suspending on-going uranium enrichment.
Ali-Asghar Soltanieh, Iran’s Ambassador to the IAEA, said the resolution passed by a 25-3 vote with six abstentions conflicted with the “spirit of cooperation” that was needed for talks to make progress. He called on the West to lean towards cooperation rather than confrontation.
The German-sponsored resolution passed by the IAEA on Friday called upon Iran to freeze uranium enrichment, and to suspend work immediately on its recently revealed Fordo nuclear enrichment facility located inside a mountain near the city of Qom.
Mr. Soltanieh said: “Resolutions, sanctions and threats have had negative impact; one can not speak to our people, who have thousands years old civilization, with the language of force, but with the language of logic.”
He added that the passage of resolutions was counterproductive and hinted that the progress Iran had made during talks last month at Vienna with the United States, France, Russia and the IAEA on a possible quid pro quo mechanism for the supply of nuclear fuel to its Tehran-based research reactor, engaged in producing medical isotopes, could now be in jeopardy. Mr. Soltanieh told Irans state-run Press TV that “over 200 hospitals whose patients are struggling with cancer are in need of radioisotopes. If they continue not to cooperate and supply the fuel, then the [Tehran] government has to look for other options.”
The television station added that some Western powers, spearheaded by the U.S. have been pressuring Iran to accept an inflexible nuclear draft deal. Iran, under the draft agreement, would ship out of the country, the bulk of its Low Enriched Uranium (LEU) stocks, in return for fuel rods, fabricated out of uranium enriched abroad to a 20 per cent level, for the Tehran reactor. Press TV said Tehran is ready to accept the nuclear swap if it takes place within its own borders.