Source Pravda.Ru

Iran to Set Date for Inspection of Uranium Enrichment Plant

According to the head of Iran's atomic energy body, Iran will soon inform the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) of a timetable for inspection of its second uranium enrichment plant. The issue will be resolved with the UN body.

Meanwhile China called for restraint ahead of talks between Iran and the five permanent UN Security Council members plus Germany on 1 October, BBC News reports.

In the meantime, the disclosure of the plant tucked inside a hillside on an ex-missile base has hardened Western powers' resolve to extract Iranian concessions now or resort to biting sanctions fast, and softened Russia's outright opposition to harsher measures.

But Western charges of a cover-up to mask nuclear arms designs for the plant near the Shi'ite holy city of Qom, and Iran's defiant denials, rekindled a confrontational atmosphere that did not augur well for any hopes of convergence in Geneva.

And given Iran's enduring refusal to negotiate limits on its enrichment programme, which Western powers fear is inexorably approaching potential nuclear weapons capability, Geneva was shaping up as a chronicle of failure foretold.

"Things have changed since last week's announcement but we have to go through the motions since Iran has asked for this meeting," said a senior Western diplomat. Reuters reports.

It was also reported, Iranian state Press TV quoted Ali Akbar Salehi, head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organization, as saying late on Monday that Tehran was in constant contact with the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

"Yes, the inspectors will come and inspect," Salehi said.

"We are working out a timetable for the inspection and we will soon be writing a letter to them about the location of the facility and others."

Iranian missile tests on Sunday and Monday added to tension with Western powers, who fear a hardline leadership in the Islamic Republic could ultimately use a threat of nuclear attack to pursue its political ends in the Middle East and beyond, Reuters reports.

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