The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) released its latest periodic report on Iran’s nuclear program last Tuesday after weeks of mainstream Western media fanfare around it.
Wide debates have been going on since then in media circles about the significance and implications of this report for Iran’s nuclear issue. While some mainstream Western media journalists and political analysts have endorsed the entire content of the IAEA report on Iran’s nuclear program as gospel or have interpreted the report as next to a green light for a military strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities, others have cast serious doubts on both the motives and veracity of the claims made against Iran by the Japanese chief of the IAEA. To add to this ongoing debate, I would like to highlight several major facts about the latest IAEA report.
The first major fact is that while the IAEA report states, more or less as in the past, that it has concerns regarding “possible military dimensions to Iran’s nuclear program” it recognizes that it is not in a position yet to make any judgment about the existence or non-existence of military nuclear activities in Iran. It is in line with this fact that the IAEA report concludes with the now-too-familiar statement that while the IAEA “continues to verify the non-diversion of declared nuclear material at the nuclear Facilities” of Iran, it is “unable to provide credible assurance about the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran, and therefore to conclude that all nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities.”