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Iran still denying inspectors 'essential' access to workshop -IAEA report

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By Reuters
Iran still denying inspectors 'essential' access to workshop -IAEA report
Iran still denying inspectors 'essential' access to workshop -IAEA report   -   Copyright  Thomson Reuters 2021   -  

<div> <p><span class="caps">VIENNA</span> – Iran has still not granted U.N. nuclear inspectors access to re-install surveillance cameras at its <span class="caps">TESA</span> Karaj centrifuge-parts workshop, a step “essential” to reviving Iran’s nuclear deal, an International Atomic Energy Agency report said on Wednesday.</p> <p>With indirect talks between the United States and Iran on reviving the nuclear deal, known as the <span class="caps">JCPOA</span>, due to resume on Nov. 29, the <span class="caps">IAEA</span> said its inability to re-install the cameras hindered its task of monitoring Iran’s nuclear activities.</p> <p>“This is seriously affecting the Agency’s ability to restore continuity of knowledge at the workshop, which has been widely recognised as essential in relation to a return to the <span class="caps">JCPOA</span>,” the confidential report seen by Reuters said.</p> <p>The workshop at the <span class="caps">TESA</span> Karaj complex makes components for centrifuges, machines that enrich uranium. It was hit by apparent sabotage in June in which one of four <span class="caps">IAEA</span> cameras there was destroyed. Iran removed them all, and the footage from the destroyed camera is missing.</p> <p><span class="caps">TESA</span> Karaj was one of several sites where Iran agreed on Sept. 12 to grant <span class="caps">IAEA</span> inspectors access, to service <span class="caps">IAEA</span> monitoring equipment and replace memory cards due to fill up with camera footage and other data.</p> <p>That arrangement helped avoid a diplomatic escalation at a time when talks were paused on reviving the <span class="caps">JCPOA</span>, which imposed restrictions on Iran’s nuclear programmes in return for the lifting of international sanctions against Tehran.</p> <p>Washington pulled out of the agreement under then-President Donald Trump in 2018, and Tehran responded by violating many of its restrictions. Talks to revive it began this year but were paused ahead of elections in Iran which brought a new hardline government to power. </p> <p>The Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday that the Karaj workshop resumed production months ago and was supplying Iran’s Fordow site with parts for the advanced IR-6 centrifuge. A senior diplomat said the agency did not know whether Karaj had resumed operating, but said IR-6 parts being used at Fordow appeared to predate the incident.</p> <p/> </div>