Iran has agreed to allow UN nuclear inspectors to install new memory cards into its cameras monitoring the country’s controversial nuclear programme in a move that could keep the inspection process on life support, and even ease a path towards a lifting of US sanctions.
Rafael Grossi, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the UN’s nuclear watchdog, struck the deal in Tehran on Sunday following two hours of talks and will report to the IAEA’s board meeting on Monday.
His breakthrough makes it less likely European states and the US will table a motion of censure against Iran that would have been passed to the UN security council.
Grossi had been preparing to report to the IAEA that his ad hoc agreements to monitor the nuclear programme struck in February had in effect collapsed. Iran, now led by a new more hardline president, Ebrahim Raisi following elections in June, had been blocking a visit by Grossi, leaving European states little alternative from their perspective but to censure Iran.