Rafael Grossi, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), met with Iranian officials in Tehran on Tuesday and said Iran agreed to continue a dialogue with the nuclear watchdog.
“The agency is seeking to continue and deepen the dialogue with the government of Iran …We agreed to continue our joint work on transparency and this will continue,” Grossi said.
The meetings come less than a week before the US and Iran are resuming indirect negotiations to revive the nuclear deal, known as the JCPOA, in Vienna on November 29th. Grossi is unhappy that Iran is not following the strict limits of the JCPOA even though Tehran is no longer bound by the agreement since the US withdrew way back in 2018.
Ahead of Grossi’s trip, the IAEA published a report outlining its issues with Iran. One of the agency’s main gripes is that Iran stopped voluntarily complying with the Additional Protocol, an aspect of the JCPOA that allows the IAEA to conduct snap inspections. But until Iran gets some sanctions relief from the US, it has no obligation to comply with the Additional Protocol.
The IAEA’s clear pro-Western bias angers the Iranian government, which was reflected in comments by Iranian officials who met with Grossi. Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian urged the IAEA to “continue to cooperate with Iran in the context of its technical duties, and avoid taking political positions.”