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UN watchdog in Iran for 'intense' nuclear talks

07 july 2015, 11:18

The UN's atomic watchdog and Iran held "intense discussions" in Tehran on Monday about the possible military dimensions of the country's nuclear programme, an Iranian official said, AFP reports.

The meeting was held as parallel talks were underway in Vienna between Iran and world powers on the eve of a deadline for what would be a historic accord on the country's suspect nuclear drive.

It comes just days after the head of the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency, Yukiya Amano, visited Tehran to try to advance Iran's negotiations with world powers over its nuclear programme.

The IAEA suspects Iran carried out research at least until 2003 on developing nuclear weapons.

It is seeking access to scientists who might have been involved, as well as documents and the sites at which any such activities took place.

Following his trip to Iran last Thursday, Amano said the talks touched on the increased role the IAEA would have after a deal with world powers to curb the country's nuclear programme.

Iran's Atomic Energy Organisation said that on Monday the IAEA delegation held "intense negotiations" with officials from the Islamic republic.

"The five-member delegation are discussing details of the understanding reached in Yukiya Amano's recent trip to Tehran," said spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi.

"They visited officials from the Atomic Energy Organisation, Supreme Security Council and the agency's permanent envoy to Iran," he said, quoted by state media.

Iran and the P5+1 -- Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States plus Germany -- were on Monday grappling to resolve the last hurdles blocking a deal that would end a 13-year standoff.

The mooted accord would see Iran scale down its nuclear activities, which it insists are for peaceful civilian purposes but which world powers fear could be used to develop nuclear weapons.

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