Following up on “this post”:http://www.totalwonkerr.net/1513/yet-another-iaea-report-on-iran from the other day, it looks as if the IAEA is making efforts to defend the recent work program between the agency and Tehran.
For example, “the AP,”:http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070907/ap_on_re_eu/nuclear_agency_iran_2;_ylt=AthoT36TNB7zstPpTRYZR6FSw60A “Reuters,”:http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070907/wl_nm/iran_nuclear_elbaradei_dc_2;_ylt=Ahvyt6_9QsLUz74Xd3hyRXRSw60A and “AFP”:http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20070907/wl_mideast_afp/irannuclearpolitics_070907193630;_ylt=AtkMVCvBLhwMDbMD1dTQxpRSw60A are reporting about a briefing that IAEA DG ElBaradei gave to reporters about the arrangement.
I found this section of the Reuters story especially noteworthy:
*He [ElBaradei] said critics had misread the pact in suggesting it ruled out future IAEA inquiries if new suspicions about Iranian activity arose, and lifted pressure on Iran to grant wider inspections or heed U.N. resolutions demanding it stop uranium enrichment,* a process that can be used to make atom bombs.
“There have been back-seat drivers putting in their five cents saying this is not a good working arrangement,” he told reporters invited into his Vienna office for a briefing.
*”Iran can never get a pass (on their nuclear behavior) until we decide to give them a pass. They may say (in public statements) that their file is now closed, but that is up to us.*
Similarly, he said, according to AFP, that
bq. the IAEA has made clear “privately and publicly that *we will continue and have the right to give any questions in the future*.”
These strike me as reasonable answers to the criticisms about the arrangement, but we’ll see what happens.
In any case, I’ve never really understood what the “the IAEA should be tougher” crowd really wants ElBaradei to do. At this point, the action RE: consequences for Iran’s noncompliance with its IAEA obligations is at the UNSC.