IAEA Director Yukiya Amano arrived in Tehran today accompanied by Herman Nackaerts, the IAEA deputy director general for safeguards, and Rafael Mariano Grossi, the agency’s assistant director general for policy, and was welcomed at Tehran’s airport by Iran's Ambassador to the IAEA Ali Asghar Soltanieh. Mr. Amano has already held talks with the Director of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Fereydoun Abbasi and Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili. He is also scheduled to meet with Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi before departing for Geneva.
No details of Amano’s talks with Iranian officials were available at this time, but analysts believe that Mr. Amano would not have made the previously unscheduled visit to Tehran if he did not believe that a framework agreement on IAEA expanded powers to inspect the country’s nuclear and relevant military sites could be achieved during his stay in the country.
On Wednesday, the six major powers and Iran would resume their talks in Baghdad. For the West, the stated goal of the meeting is to start a verifiable process to halt any work on nuclear weapons in Iran. Today’s expected agreement between IAEA and Iran on free access of the agency’s inspectors to suspected military sites, namely Parchin, would go a long way to seal a deal in Baghdad.
Photo Credit: IAEA Director Yukiya Amano (center) meets Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili (r) with Iran's Ambassador to the IAEA Ali Asghar Soltanieh present. Tehran. 21 May 2012. IRNA