United Nations-backed nuclear inspectors on Sunday visited a newly disclosed Iranian nuclear facility near the city of Qom, Iranian media has reported.
That proposal calls for low-enriched uranium produced in Iran to be sent abroad for further enrichment and then returned for use in medical research and treatment. Tehran is studying the draft proposal and will have an answer next week, Iranian diplomat Ali Asghar Soltanieh said on state-run Press TV. Iran informed IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei that it is “considering the proposal in depth and in a favorable light, but it needs until the middle of next week to provide a response,” according to an IAEA statement. Delegations from Iran, France, Russia, the United States and the IAEA met in Vienna this week to work out details of the tentative deal reached in early October. France, Russia and the United States have indicated their approval of the arrangement. “The Director General hopes that Iran’s response will equally be positive, since approval of this agreement will signal a new era of cooperation,” the IAEA statement said. After the current inspection, but before the end of the month, Iranian officials are expected to meet with the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council — Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States — plus Germany to further discuss Tehran’s nuclear program. Iran’s leaders maintain that their nation’s nuclear program is intended solely for peaceful purposes, but many in the West believe Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons capabilities. Low-enriched nuclear fuel can be further enriched into weapons-grade material.CNN’s Per Nyberg contributed to this report.