|Iran may consider signing Additional Protocol if certain conditions met: official||
TEHRAN – A senior Iranian nuclear official said on Monday that Tehran could consider signing the Additional Protocol if certain conditions are met.
The Additional Protocol allows greater scrutiny of nuclear activities of the countries which have signed the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
“Once sanctions are lifted, animosities are ended, and all issues regarding the nuclear dossier are resolved …, we will be ready to sign the Additional Protocol. However, the Majlis has the final say,” said Behrouz Kamalvandi, the spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI).
He added that if Iran and the 5+1 group - the United States, France, Russia, China, Britain, and Germany –reach an agreement on a final comprehensive deal and the only issue would be a call for greater transparency, then Iran can consider the Additional Protocol.
Iran and the six world powers wrapped up their latest round of negotiations in the Austrian city of Vienna last Friday which is meant to build on the interim nuclear deal they clinched last November in Geneva.
Under the Geneva deal, Iran agreed not to expand its nuclear program for six months in exchange for limited sanctions relief. The agreement came into force on January 20. Iran and the major powers have set a July 20 deadline to clinch a long-term nuclear deal. The deadline can be extended by another half year if both sides agree.
Kamalvandi went on to say that the International Atomic Energy Agency seeks to reserve the right to pay unannounced visits to certain sites and that is the reason they are bringing up the issue of additional protocol.
According to the spokesman, signing the Additional Protocol is a key part of the comprehensive nuclear deal, and the government can decide whether to accept the protocol based on its review and the progress made at the nuclear negotiations. However, he noted, the final say lies with the parliament.
Tehran voluntarily signed the Additional Protocol in December 2003 and remained committed to it for over two years, but suspended its implementation after the UN Security Council “interfered” in the country’s nuclear energy program and imposed sanctions on the Islamic Republic.
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