Jun 8, 2022 - World

IAEA board passes resolution criticizing Iran

The flag of Iran is seen in front of the International Atomic Energy Agency headquarters. Photo: Michael Gruber/Getty Images
The flag of Iran is seen in front of the International Atomic Energy Agency headquarters. Photo: Michael Gruber/Getty Images

The International Atomic Energy Agency Board of Governors on Wednesday passed a resolution calling on Iran to fully cooperate with the UN inspectors' investigation into three undeclared sites.

Why it matters: It's the first resolution of its kind passed in two years and comes after 10 weeks of stalemate in the indirect talks between the U.S. and Iran on reviving the 2015 nuclear deal.

Driving the news: 30 board members voted in favor of the resolution that was drafted by the U.S. and its E3 allies —France, Germany and the U.K.

  • Russia and China voted against it, while India, Pakistan and Libya abstained.

State of play: Several hours before the vote, Iran announced it was disconnecting several IAEA cameras at its nuclear sites that were operating beyond its basic nuclear safeguards commitment.

  • Yes, but: More than 80% of the cameras at Iran's nuclear sites are under the safeguards agreement and will continue operating for now.
  • Tehran will install more advanced centrifuges at the Natanz uranium enrichment facility as a response to IAEA resolution, Iranian foreign ministry said in a statement

What they're saying: Mohammed Reza Ghaebi, the Iranian acting representative to the IAEA, said resolution discourages Iran from cooperating with the agency and won't push Tehran to make concessions.

  • Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Saeed Khatibzadeh added in a statement on Twitter that the U.S. and E3 "put their shortsighted agenda ahead of IAEA's credibility by pushing a miscalculated and ill-advised" resolution.
  • "The initiators are responsible for the consequences. Iran's response is firm and proportionate," he said.

The U.S., U.K., France and Germany said in a joint statement that the "overwhelming majority vote at the IAEA Board of Governors today sends an unambiguous message to Iran that it must meet its safeguards obligations and provide technically credible clarifications on outstanding safeguards issues."

  • "We urge Iran to heed the call of the international community to fulfill its legal obligations, and cooperate with the IAEA to fully clarify and resolve issues without further delay," the statement added.
  • "If Iran does this and the Director General is able to report that the unresolved safeguards issues are no longer outstanding, we would see no need for further Board consideration and action on these issues."

Israel's Foreign Ministry called the board's vote "a first and necessary step towards the goal of restoring Iran’s compliance with its safeguards obligations."

  • "The time has come for the international community to support the agency’s integrity and professionalism and to act against Iran with all the means at its disposal," the statement added.

Editor's note: This story has been updated with the statements from Israel's Foreign Ministry, Iranian officials and the U.S. and E3.

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