International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) director general Yukio Amano has reaffirmed that he is on track to deliver the final report on Iran’s compliance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) by 15 December, raising hopes that US, UN and EU sanctions on Tehran could be relaxed by the end of the year.
Speaking at a conference in Brussels on 11 November, Amano said that the IAEA’s monitoring was driven by the need for clarity about Iran’s nuclear programme, not by a conviction it had, or was developing, nuclear weapons.
“My quarterly reports to the IAEA board of governors from 2010 onwards stated that nuclear material declared to the agency by Iran was not being diverted from peaceful purposes,” Amano said. “But I also stated that Iran was not providing sufficient cooperation to enable the agency to conclude that all nuclear material in Iran was in peaceful activities.’
“Let me be clear,” Amano said. “I did not say that Iran had nuclear weapons. But I did say that Iran had a case to answer.”
Amano said that the IAEA has completed the activities required by the JCPOA by the 15 October deadline.
“We are finalising our analysis of all of the information at our disposal,” he said. “I will present my final assessment on all past and present outstanding issues to our board of governors by December 15th.”
He said the report will be factual, objective and impartial but it was up to the member states of the IAEA to determine the appropriate response.
The approval of the IAEA report will clear the way for the automatic relaxation of nuclear-related sanctions against Iran. Analysts say it is consequently possible that the relaxation of sanctions will take place before the end of 2015.
Approval of the IAEA report on Iran’s compliance with the JCPOA will automatically clear the way for the relaxation of nuclear related sanctions imposed by the US, the UN and the EU. Primary US sanctions imposed on Iran because of its support of terrorism, ballistic weapons plans and activities in Syria which restrict the ability of US citizens and organisations to interact normally with Iran will remain in place.
Analysts say that it remains possible that the relaxation of nuclear-related sanctions including the EU’s embargo on Iranian oil imports could take place before the end of 2015