Iran shuts down UN inquiry into ‘secret atomic warehouse’

It is the first time Iran seems to have refused to cooperate with the IAEA’s monitoring, The Wall Street Journal reports.

By World Israel News Staff

“Iran is stifling a United Nations probe of its alleged storage of nuclear equipment and radioactive material in Tehran,” reports the Wall Street Journal, citing diplomats as their source.

“Iran has refused to provide answers to important questions raised by the U.N.’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) over allegations that Iran had established a now-dismantled site in Tehran to store equipment and material used during past nuclear weapons work,” say the diplomats, according to the newspaper report.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in a speech at the U.N. General Assembly in September 2018, accused Iran of keeping a “secret atomic warehouse” just outside its capital, despite the 2015 deal with world powers that was meant to keep it from obtaining nuclear weapons.

It is the first time Iran seems to have refused to cooperate with the IAEA’s monitoring of its activities since the nuclear deal with six world powers was implemented in January 2016, says the Wall Street Journal.

On Friday, The Washington Free Beacon reported that an “upcoming report” by the IAEA “includes new language suggesting the Islamic Republic has not been cooperating with international nuclear inspectors who are mandated to provide oversight on the Islamic Republic’s weapons program.” The news outlet cited multiple sources familiar with the contents of the report.

The IAEA’s report on the matter began circulating late Friday among reporters and “Iran watchers” in Washington, D.C., said The Washington Free Beacon, adding that the report was said to show that Iran “has stopped adhering to its transparency commitments under the landmark Obama-era nuclear agreement.”

For his part, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani charged Tuesday that European countries are failing to implement their commitments following the U.S. pullout from the 2015 nuclear deal with Tehran.

Iranian state TV quoted Rouhani as saying that the Europeans “did not carry out their task.”

The comments come as Iranian diplomats are in France for last-minute talks. Rouhani reiterated that Iran will not enter talks with the United States unless Washington lifts its sanctions against Tehran first.

Iran on Monday threatened to “take a strong step” away from the nuclear deal if Europe cannot offer new terms by a deadline at the end of this week.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.