UN nuclear watchdog strikes spy camera deal with Iran — Analysis

The UN’s nuclear watchdog has agreed a deal with Iran to replace surveillance cameras at a centrifuge-parts workshop in the TESA Karaj complex after they were removed in an apparent sabotage attack in June.

On Wednesday, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said it would soon install new cameras at Iran’s Karaj centrifuge component manufacturing workshop. According to the agency Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi reached an agreement in which Mohammad Eslami (head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization) would replace the cameras. 

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“The agreement with Iran on replacing surveillance cameras at the Karaj facility is an important development for the IAEA’s verification and monitoring activities in Iran. It will enable us to resume necessary continuity of knowledge at this facility,”Grossi stated in a statement.

According to the statement, the devices that were removed in June will be replaced by the ones installed later in the year. Iran blamed Israel for the June sabotage attack that destroyed Karaj’s Karaj workshop. Tehran had removed all the cameras that survived and refused to allow the IAEA to replace them.

In the statement, it was stated that Iran and UN agencies will work together in order to resolve any remaining safeguarding problems.

Wednesday’s agreement represents something of a minor breakthrough, as broader nuclear talks to bring Iran and the US back in line with the terms of an Obama-era atomic deal remain deadlocked.

Then-US President Donald Trump unilaterally pulled America out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JPOA) in 2018, re-imposing harsh economic sanctions on Iran as part of a maximum pressure campaign against Tehran’s regime. Iran reacted by cancelling a number of the agreements it had previously made under the agreement.



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