News / Middle East

Iran Defiant as IAEA Talks Break Down

Herman Nackaerts, center, Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Safeguards of the International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, is interviewed as he arrives after his flight from Iran at Vienna's Schwechat airport, Austria, February 22, 2012.
Herman Nackaerts, center, Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Safeguards of the International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, is interviewed as he arrives after his flight from Iran at Vienna's Schwechat airport, Austria, February 22, 2012.

United Nations inspectors say a visit to Iran aimed at gaining greater access to key nuclear sites and scientists ended in failure, as the Islamic Republic's supreme leader warned no obstacle would derail his country's nuclear program.

International Atomic Energy Agency chief Yukiya Amano said Wednesday Iran rejected a request to inspect the Parchin military complex near Tehran, suspected of housing a secret underground nuclear facility. He said Tehran refused to allow his team to interview scientists or engage in substantive talks about Iran's nuclear course.

Watch video of IAEA's
Amano

In a defiant response, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei said Iran's atomic work will continue despite "pressures, sanctions and assassinations," and that the country is not seeking nuclear weapons.

Chief inspector Herman Nackaerts called Wednesday's talks "disappointing." He said the IAEA had gone into its latest visit - and a previous, inconclusive one last month - "in a constructive spirit," but that "we could not finalize a way forward."

He said the IAEA's next steps will be determined after his team reports to the agency's chief and its board of governors, which is scheduled to meet early next month.

France denounced Wednesday Iran's failure to give U.N. inspectors full access to its nuclear sites as another "missed opportunity" that could undermine chances of reviving wider talks between Tehran and world powers.

Israel and the United States have not ruled out the use of force to stop Iran from building a nuclear weapon. Tehran has threatened to take its own preemptive military action if it believes its national security interests are being threatened.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minster Gennady Gatilov warned Israel on Wednesday that attacking Iran would be "catastrophic," and played down the failure of the IAEA's latest mission to Tehran, saying there is still a chance for new talks.

Russia and China, as well as many Western nations, are concerned that any military action against Iran could engulf the Middle East in wider war, which would send oil prices rocketing at a time of global economic troubles.

Israel and Western powers accuse Iran of trying to develop nuclear weapons under cover of a civilian energy program, a charge Tehran denies.

 

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

Join the conversation on our social journalism site -
Middle East Voices
. Follow our Middle East reports on
Twitter and discuss them on our Facebook page.

You May Like

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. More

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

Dropout rate at an all-time high in South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during 3-year civil war More

Tennessee Songbirds Fly Coop Long Before Tornadoes Arrive

Researchers say birds apparently alerted to danger by sounds at frequencies below range of human hearing More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US: Response to Sony Hack Will Be Proportionali
X
Aru Pande
December 19, 2014 1:45 AM
The White House says President Barack Obama considers the cyberattack on Sony Corp. a serious national security matter and that the U.S. will counter with an "appropriate response." VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video US: Response to Sony Hack Will Be Proportional

The White House says President Barack Obama considers the cyberattack on Sony Corp. a serious national security matter and that the U.S. will counter with an "appropriate response." VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid