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Iran says IAEA visit won't stifle nuclear rights

TEHRAN, Iran — Iran confirmed Saturday a visit by inspectors of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the official news agency IRNA reported.

At the same time however, Tehran reiterated that the visit did not mean Iran would make any concessions over its nuclear rights.

"The IAEA inspectors will come to Iran and the visit will take about one month," said Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast.

"But Iran is absolutely serious in maintaining its nuclear rights and will not make any concessions in this regard," the spokesman added.

The high-ranking IAEA delegation, headed by deputy head Herman Nackaerts, will visit Iran on Jan. 28. Also in the team will be assistant director general Rafael Grossi and IAEA legal department head Peri Lynne Johnson.

The team plans to inspect the new uranium enrichment site of Fordo, south of the capital Tehran, which Iran says is to be operational in February and enrich uranium to 3.5, 4 and 20 percent.

This is the first IAEA team to visit Iran after the U.N. nuclear agency accused Tehran in a November report of being involved in a secret nuclear weapons program. Tehran categorically denied the charges.

The IAEA report likely will serve as a basis for further sanctions by the West against Tehran, which, this time, will include the central bank and Iran's oil exports — which form more than 70 percent of the country's income.

"Our invitation to the IAEA to come to Iran proves that our nuclear activities are transparent, that we have nothing to hide and that our approach with the IAEA is based upon goodwill," Mehmanparast said.

Iran says IAEA visit won't stifle nuclear rights 01/14/12 [Last modified: Saturday, January 14, 2012 10:32pm]
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