UN Report: Iran's Nuclear Intentions Are Peaceful

Iran president Hassan RouhaniCarlos Barria/ReutersIranian President Hassan Rouhani

Iran on Saturday said the latest U.N. report on its nuclear activities, which calculated it had slashed its nuclear stockpile by around 80 per cent, proved its atomic program was peaceful.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said in its quarterly report on Friday that Iran had reduced its stockpile of higher-grade enriched uranium gas under an interim pact with world powers.

It also said it had started to engage with a long-stalled IAEA investigation into suspected weapons research.

A steep cut in uranium gas – a relatively short technical step away from weapons-grade material – is among concessions demanded by the United states and its Western countries in return for limited easing of economic sanctions against Tehran.

International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Yukiya Amano addresses the media after a board of governors meeting at the IAEA headquarters in Vienna January 24, 2014. REUTERS/Heinz-Peter BaderThomson ReutersIAEA Director General Amano addresses the media after a board of governors meeting at the IAEA headquarters in Vienna

“The report is an affirmation of Iran’s claim to peaceful activities,” nuclear spokesman Behruz Kamalvandi told the official news agency IRNA.

“No deviations have been seen in these activities.”

Western countries have long suspected the Islamic republic of seeking nuclear weapons capability and Tehran’s cooperation with the IAEA is a test of any progress in the current talks with the six world power known as P5+1.

The latest round of negotiations failed to make much headway last week, raising doubts over the prospects for a breakthrough by the late July deadline.

(Reporting by Mehrdad Balali; Editing by Sophie Hares)

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