Iran talks of ‘double standards’ at IAEA

August 1st, 2008 - 8:53 pm ICT by IANS  

Vienna, Aug 1 (IANS)Iran, one of the 35 members of the board of governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Friday raised “serious concern” at the “double standard policy” of the US during the discussion on India’s safeguards agreement. While recognising India’s right to develop peaceful uses of nuclear energy, Tehran’s representative said the American stand has undermined the “credibility, integrity and universality” of the nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

It is interesting that Iran, even though it did not directly attack India, raised its objection and concerns about the proposed India-US nuclear deal with a diatribe against Washington.

Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran’s ambassador to the IAEA, said “double standard policy of the US which has and shall undermine the credibility, integrity and universality of the NPT.”

He added: “There is a serious concern that the US has taken this step with the intention to create precedence and pave the way for Israel to continue its clandestine weapons activities refraining from adherence to NPT, inspite of continuous calls by international community to eliminate all its nuclear weapons and putting all its nuclear arsenal, material and facilities under the Agency’s compressive safeguards.”

But through its criticism of the US, Iran also made it clear that it had not forgotten India’s decision to vote on a resolution against it at the IAEA board of governors’ meeting more than two years back.

“The conclusion of such safeguards agreement being based on the bilateral nuclear agreement between the US and India raises pertinent questions about the status and the fate of non proliferation regime,” he said in his speech.

He pointed out that Iran fully recognizes “the sovereign choice and decision” taken by India for “further justified development” of nuclear energy to fulfil its vast energy need while at the same time respecting its decision not to join the NPT on grounds in was discriminatory.

He stressed that members of the board should also try and keep in mind the discrimination shown against Iran by the US-led countries to prevent it from pursuing its peaceful nuclear energy programme.

“The disappointing status vis-à-vis parties to NPT being deprived from access to nuclear, material and technology for peaceful purposes the Islamic Republic of Iran expects member states while considering the safeguards agreement of India to consider the above mentioned concerns and later exercise vigilance of member states on such consequences on NPT as well as regional and global security,” he added.

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