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Iranian lawmakers call for review of cooperation with IAEA

Sunday November 13, 2011 11:43:41 PM, IANS

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Tehran: Iranian lawmakers said Sunday that after the recent International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report on the country's nuclear programme, the cooperation between the Islmaic Republic and the UN nuclear watchdog needs to be reviewed.

Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said Sunday that the Iranian lawmakers will soon start reviewing the ways of the country's future cooperation with the IAEA, reported Xinhua.

After the IAEA's "hostile" nuclear report against Iran, the parliament believes that "it is necessary to review Iran's cooperation with the Agency," Larijani said when addressing a parliament session here Sunday.

"The parliament's National Security and Foreign Policy Commission is required to start studying the issue in cooperation with other bodies and report back the results," Larijani was quoted as saying by the semi-official Fars news agency.

After the IAEA released the report claiming that Iran was seeking nuclear weapons, the parliament has come to the conclusion that cooperating or not cooperating with the UN nuclear watchdog has no impact on its decisions on Iran, he added.

Senior lawmaker, Alaeddin Boroujerdi, told Fars on Sunday that "unfortunately, the agency and the director general follow the guidelines of the US and performs within a political atmosphere" instead of within the framework of IAEA regulations and implementing its obligations.

Therefore, the Commission will discuss the ways of cooperation with the IAEA in its meeting this week, said Boroujerdi, adding that "we believe that (Iran's) cooperation with the IAEA needs reconsideration."

Fars reported Saturday that the Iranian parliament was to discuss the country's withdrawal from the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) after the IAEA released the "biased" report against Iran.

Mohammad-Esmail Kowsari, vice chairman of parliament's National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, told Fars Saturday that the commission would "study Iran's withdrawal from the NPT" after a relevant demand by a major political faction of the Iranian university students.

On Wednesday, Iran's permanent representative to the IAEA Ali-Asghar Soltanieh said that Iran was likely to reconsider means of its cooperation with the IAEA.

Soltanieh told state TV that due to the "historical mistake" that the IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano had made over his report on Iran's nuclear programme, the Islamic Republic is likely to reconsider the means of cooperation with the IAEA.

Asked about some Iranian lawmakers' views that Iran may walk out of the NPT, Soltanieh said that Iranian lawmakers may have their own independent views.

However, the ways of cooperation with the IAEA in the future depends on the decision of the Islamic Republic's high-ranking officials, he said.

On Sunday, Iranian Foreign Minister Ali-Akbar Salehi criticized the latest report by the International Atomic Energy Agency on his country's nuclear program saying that the UN watchdog has abandoned objectivity on the issue.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Sunday warned the international community that Iran's nuclear ambitions endanger "the peace of the entire world."

Netanyahu called on all nations to stop what he referred to as "Iran's race for nuclear weapons."

The Israeli prime minister called the IAEA report " comprehensive" and said that it "strengthens the claims by leading countries in the world and Israel that Iran is systematically developing nuclear weapons."

The IAEA said on Tuesday in its latest report on Iran's nuclear programme that "credible" evidence showed that Iran had been seeking to obtain nuclear weapons.

Tehran has completely rejected the report, calling it " unbalanced, unprofessional and politically-motivated."






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