IranMiddle East

Psychological operations won’t disrupt Iran’s nuclear plans: AEOI chief

The chief of Iran’s nuclear agency has said Tehran won’t be affected by the malicious propaganda perpetuated by the Israeli regime that seeks to hinder the country’s progress.

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of an event in Tehran on Tuesday, Mohammad Eslami, head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), said the cooperation between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will only by limited to the IAEA safeguards and the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

“Relations between Iran and the agency must be based on the laws and statutes of the IAEA safeguards and the NPT,” the official said. “We establish our ties with the agency within the framework of these laws, and we are affected by these legal regulations in interacting. The agency monitors Iran’s nuclear activities in accordance with the laws and regulations.”

Eslami described anti-Iran media reports as a “psychological operation”, noting that the allegations are aimed at portraying Tehran as a country not committed to non-proliferation and hindering Iran’s scientific and technological progress.

Blaming the Israeli regime for the propaganda, the AEOI chief stressed that the psychological operations won’t disturb Iran’s plans. “We will move forward on our path.”

Eslami also said the IAEA’s request to access the TESA Karaj Complex, a centrifuge component manufacturing workshop in north-central Iran, is beyond the safeguards agreement and therefore “unacceptable”.

He further noted that if the UN nuclear watchdog seeks access to the nuclear site under the 2015 nuclear agreement (aka JCPOA), then all other parties should move to fulfill their obligations.

“If the JCPOA is slated to be operational, all [parties] must fulfill their obligations and it is not that Iran fully complies with its obligations and the other party does not fulfill its obligations,” he asserted.

“When they do not fulfill their commitments and impose harsh, illegal and unjust sanctions on Iran and expand them every day, there is no reason to force us to comply with them [Iran’s obligations under the JCPOA]. We act within the framework of IAEA safeguards and NPT and do not accept anything other than that,” Eslami hastened to add.

The JCPOA was inked by Iran and six world powers in 2015. Under the deal, Tehran agreed to put limits on certain aspects of its nuclear activities in exchange for the removal of draconian international sanctions imposed against the country.

In 2018, however, the US pulled out of the pact and reinstated sanctions under the ‘maximum pressure campaign’ against the Islamic Republic, effectively depriving Iran of the deal’s benefits by forcing third parties to stop doing business with Iran.

Iran remained patient for an entire year, after which it began to take incremental steps away from its nuclear obligations, especially after Europeans failed to salvage the deal under the US pressure.

The Islamic Republic’s decision to ramp up its nuclear activities prompted other parties to revive talks earlier this year.

Iran has repeatedly said that it seeks the removal of all sanctions in a verifiable manner as well as a guarantee from Washington that it will not abandon the deal and violate its commitments again.

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