Source Pravda.Ru

IAEA head to meet Iranian chief nuclear negotiator

The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Mohamed el Baradei, will meet with newly-appointed Iranian chief nuclear negotiator on Friday on Tehran's nuclear program, according to the UN nuclear watchdog.

ElBaradei and Larijani will be discussing "issues related to International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards inspections and the current state of play," spokeswoman Melissa Fleming said in confirming Friday's meeting, IranMania reports.

Iran has defied the international community by resuming work on making power reactor fuel that could also be used to make nuclear weapons but insists that it wants to continue talks with the European Union on guaranteeing its atomic program is peaceful.

Larijani, who has taken office in the new government of ultra-conservative President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad who was elected in June, had Thursday in Tehran challenged the role of Britain, France and Germany as the leaders of diplomatic efforts over the Islamic republic's nuclear programme.

Larijani signalled that Iran may look towards widening involvement in the talks, saying that non-aligned countries had asked Iran to explain why the negotiations have only been with the so-called EU-3.

Iran has accused the three European states of damaging the diplomatic effort by demanding Iran abandon its work on the nuclear fuel cycle, the focus of fears Iran could acquire the bomb, even though fuel work is technically permitted by the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Mottaki said recently after being nominated to the new cabinet that he would seek to promote "balanced ties with various countries" and would publicly announce the latest developments in Iran's nuclear dossier as soon as he assumed office, according to Xinhua.