U.N. nuclear Chief Rafael Grossi is all set for talks in Iran today in order to ease a standoff between Tehran and the West. The meeting of the Board of Governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will take place next week. Grossi arrived in Tehran last night, Iranian state media said. The IAEA and Iran’s envoy to the agency said he would meet the new head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, Mohammad Eslami.
Grossi is expected to hold a news conference at Vienna airport this evening after returning later, the IAEA said. The IAEA informed member states this week that there had been no progress on two central issues. The issues include explaining uranium traces found at several old, undeclared sites and getting urgent access to some monitoring equipment. After solving these issues, the agency can continue to keep track of parts of Iran’s nuclear program as provided for by the 2015 deal.
Eslami described the negotiations between Iran and the Vienna-IAEA as ‘sheerly technical’ without any room for politics. The announcement has given Iran to buy time ahead of an IAEA board meeting this week in which western powers had been arguing for Tehran to be censured over its lack of cooperation with international inspectors.