Page last updated at 06:02 GMT, Monday, 7 September 2009 07:02 UK

UN to debate Iran nuclear stance

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at a uranium enrichment plant (File photo)
Western nations suspect Iran is developing nuclear weapons

The UN's nuclear watchdog is set to debate Iran's nuclear programme at a meeting of its board of governors.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has urged Iran in its latest report to clear up claims that it has been trying to make nuclear bombs.

Iran - which insists that its nuclear programme is purely peaceful - says the allegations are fabricated.

Syria is also on the agenda for the annual closed week-long session of the IAEA in Vienna, Austria.

The body's 35-nation board of governors will discuss on Monday the nuclear watchdog's latest report on its six-year investigation into Iran's programme.


The assessment said a visit to a plant in Natanz in August had noted a reduction in the number of centrifuges used to actively enrich uranium.

But it also accused Tehran of a lack of co-operation with the IAEA on Western intelligence allegations of weaponisation.

In a recent letter to the IAEA, Iranian ambassador Ali Asghar Soltanieh said the intelligence was "forged" and the matter was now closed.

Syria is also on the agenda at the meeting.

A recent assessment on Syria criticised it for not fully co-operating with an inquiry into allegations it was trying to build a nuclear complex.

Syria became subject to IAEA investigation in 2007 after Israeli jets destroyed what the US said was a nearly finished nuclear reactor.

It is claimed that the plant was built with North Korean help and could produce plutonium, a substance used in nuclear warheads.

Syria denies the accusations, but after initially allowing in IAEA inspectors last year, repeatedly blocked requests for further access.

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