Cablegate: Iaea/Bog/Iran: Board Statements Increase Pressure

DE RUEHUNV #0710/01 3271914
O 231914Z NOV 07





E.O. 12958: N/A

REF: A) UNVIE 531 B) STATE 159402

UNVIE VIEN 00000710 001.2 OF 008

1. (SBU) Summary: While Iran tried to emphasize positive
progress at the November 22-23 Board of Governor's meeting,
most members expressed concern over the DG's report and
called on Iran to rectify the situation. Even though DG
ElBaradei's opening statement to the Board was slightly more
positive than his November 15 report in noting "good
progress" on the work plan, the vast majority of Board
members, including Russia and China, and the DG himself,
called on Iran to implement the Additional Protocol (27
members) and legally required UNSC confidence building
measures to include suspension of uranium enrichment (28
members). Most of the national statements balanced a greater
or lesser degree of Iran's progress on P1/P2 issues with the
need for Iran's proactive cooperation and transparency, and
most noted concern about the diminishing knowledge of current
activities. Russia gave an unhelpful "positive assessment"
of the progress to date but underlined the lack of any
economic rationale for indigenous development of the fuel
cycle, while China urged Iran to demonstrate "flexibility" on
suspension. NAM members paid homage to NAM principals, but a
large number finished the ritual defense of NPT rights with
"in accordance with legal obligations." Ghana, Ecuador and
Iraq were particularly helpful in this regard.

2. (SBU) Summary cont: The NAM statement hewed to the
September 2006 Summit declaration and welcomed substantive
progress. Perhaps reflecting dismay at ElBaradei's September
walkout, (ref a) the EU statement was notably more positive
on the IAEA role than previously. EU, EU-3 and other
like-minded interventions were in line with the U.S.
statement, with EU/EU-3, Australia, Canada, and Japan (a
total of 14 Board members) noting the potential for "further
appropriate measures" under UNSCR 1747 (i.e. a third
sanctions resolution). Ecuador and Chile also gave strong
statements. A few countries asked the DG for an update on
work plan implementation before the March Board, but others,
notably South Africa, expressed reservations about
"artificial deadlines." Argentina and Pakistan gave weak
statements in the context of the robust calls on Iran to come
into compliance. India took a dig at Islamabad, asking for a
more thorough expose of the proliferation network, but was
notably weak on Iran. In all, 32 of 35 Board members either
spoke or were represented by the EU statement; only Saudi
Arabia, Ethiopia and Nigeria were silent. Eight non-Board
members -- Iran, Egypt, Venezuela, Cuba, Indonesia, Libya and
New Zealand, Israel -- spoke, with New Zealand supporting the
US position and Cuba railing against unilateralism and
hegemony. Egypt and Libya took the opportunity to bring up
Israel's non-NPT status, causing Israel to respond. Iran
attempted to de-legitimize the UNSCR by citing the IAEA
statute on referrals. It blamed its woes on the United
States and a small number of other countries for politicizing
the IAEA's technical mission. End Summary.

ElBaradei More Positive

3. (SBU) ElBaradei began by noting the IAEA's inability to
verify important aspects of Iran's nuclear activities,
including the nature and scope of enrichment activities and
the alleged studies and other activities that may have
military applications. Putting a more positive spin on the
work plan than in the November 15 report, he assessed that it
was "proceeding according to schedule" and mentioned
"progress" three times, including "good progress" on past
P1/P2 issues, though the Agency would continue to verify the
completeness of Iran's declarations and investigate remaining
outstanding issues, particularly uranium contamination and
alleged studies over the "next several weeks." He reported
that the Agency "is continuing to work on arrangements to
make copies of the alleged studies available to Iran."
Stepping back from the November 15 report's assessment of
"reactive" cooperation, the DG noted "an increased level" of
cooperation by Iran but urged Iran to be "more" proactive.
As in the report, the DG underlined the Agency's diminishing
knowledge of current programs and the need for Iran to
implement "without delay" the AP and transparency measures,
to provide any credible assurance as to the absence of
undeclared activities, particularly R&D, procurement, and
manufacturing of centrifuges. ElBaradei also repeated his
urging of Iran to implement UNSC confidence building

UNVIE VIEN 00000710 002.2 OF 008

measures, including suspension, to facilitate the return to

Russia and China

4. (SBU) Russia was both unhelpful in observing that the
Agency's efforts on the work plan deserve a "positive
assessment" and helpful in underlining the lack of any
economic rationale for Iran's development of fuel cycle
technologies. Governor Berdennikov saw a "positive trend"
emerging, given Iran's cooperation on the work plan "ahead of
schedule", and cited (as did many others) the consistency of
Iran's declarations on past P1/P2 with the Agency's findings;
and its provision of the U-metal document. Russia backed the
DG's call for implementation of the AP and compliance with
UNSC/Board requirements on suspension. Berdennikov mentioned
the Angarsk proposal for assured supply of nuclear fuel and,
given the lack of an economic rationale for indigenous fuel
production, urged Iran to examine its options and make a
"balanced, logical" decision.

5. (SBU) The Chinese were also sanguine in assessing "some"
early progress and cooperation on the work plan. At the same
time, China called for implementation of Board and UNSC
resolutions, and put the onus on Iran to show not only
proactive cooperation but "flexibility" on suspension to
create the conditions for negotiations. Ambassador Tang
noted that FM Li had visited Tehran to push for such
cooperation. China supported the EU-Iran dialogue and called
for patience, diplomacy and flexibility on the part of all
parties. Predictably, neither Russia nor China addressed
further UNSC actions.

EU and Like-Minded

6. (SBU) The French delivered the separate EU-3 statement,
which iterated four years of EU and IAEA efforts; and noted
the double freeze proposal and Iran's failure to make any
headway with Solana. Ambassador Deniau observed that the DG
had demanded a full confession but Iran had only given
reactive cooperation. While the statement noted some steps
in the right direction, the "next few weeks" should be a
deadline to finalize the work plan. Deniau noted concerns
with past Libya/AQ Khan network connections and about present
issues such as next generation centrifuges. The EU-3
underlined Iran's violation of unanimous UNSCRs by going from
0 to 3000 centrifuges since last year, and noted that 3000
centrifuges are enough to produce enough fissile material for
a weapon in about a year. Concerned about diminishing
knowledge, the EU-3 called for immediate implementation of
the AP and Code 3.1. The EU3 supported a negotiated solution
but would also pursue EU sanctions.

7. (SBU) The EU statement included a bow, reportedly at the
insistence of Italy and Spain, to "welcoming progress" as
described in the DG's report on the consistency of P1/P2
findings and the U-metal document. The statement noted
concerns about remaining issues with a military dimension and
otherwise included all the right elements: Iran's reactive
cooperation, diminishing knowledge absent the AP, no
unilateral modification of Code 3.1, non-compliance with UNSC
requirements for suspension (including on R&D activities),
"further appropriate measures" under UNSCRs, and support for
the UNSC process, and reiteration of the June 2006 offer.
All EU members, candidates, and affiliated states associated
themselves with this statement; only Albania gave an
additional national statement. Albania's helpful
intervention noted that building confidence went beyond past
issues, underlined the AP and suspension per unanimous
UNSCRs, and called for Iran's "full, unreserved, and
continued proactive cooperation."

8. (SBU) After encouragement by Mission and Embassy Bern to
be more forthright in their statement, the Swiss toughened up
their statement. Switzerland noted the need for Iran to
clarify both past and present activities. The Swiss welcomed
the Agency's efforts but noted the failure to close P1/P2,
and asked the Secretariat to provide deadlines for work plan
remaining issues. Concerned about diminishing knowledge,
Switzerland also called upon Iran to implement the AP as well

UNVIE VIEN 00000710 003.2 OF 008

as other required confidence building measures.

9. (SBU) Like-minded countries Canada, Australia, Japan and
New Zealand (under rule 50) made strong statements. Canada
highlighted the credibility deficit after two decades of
undeclared activities and the need for confidence building
measures well beyond the work plan. While acknowledging
some progress on the latter, Canada expressed deep concern
with Iran's grudging and reactive cooperation and the
Agency's diminishing knowledge; and was awaiting results on
issues outstanding for years. Noting the September P5 1
statement to move forward with a third resolution, Canada
urged compliance with UNSCRs and AP implementation. It asked
the DG to continue to report on Iran as a special
verification case.

10. (SBU) Australia did not believe Iran had made a strategic
shift, and recalled Iran's unfulfilled promises of full
cooperation in 2003. The Australian statement noted several
unresolved work plan issues, including P1/P2, highlighted
serious concerns about military involvement, and concluded
that Iran had not passed the DG's litmus test. Noting issues
to be addressed in the next few weeks, Australia requested
that the DG inform the Board in the months before the March
BOG session. For its part, Japan called for proactive
cooperation and noted that cooperation on the work plan was
not sufficient. Both Australia and Japan called upon Iran to
implement the AP, Code 3.1 and, urging suspension, condemned
its violation of Chapter VII UNSCRs. They both underlined
"further appropriate measures" called for in UNSCR 1747.
Non-Board member New Zealand also took the floor expressing
deep concern about the Agency's diminishing knowledge, Iran's
failure to implement the AP and to comply with UNSCRs, but
stopped short of calling for a third resolution.

NAM, Fellow Travelers, Latin Americans

11. (SBU) Delivering the NAM statement, Cuba gave a long
verbatim recitation of the 2006 Havana NAM Summit
declaration. The NAM predictably welcomed "substantive
progress" in the work plan, including the consistency of
P1-P2 findings, Iran's provision of the U-metal document,
timely and sufficient access, and other positive aspects of
the DG's report. The statement called for proactive
cooperation by Iran and warned against any undue pressure on
the IAEA or interference in the verification process. Cuba
went further in its national statement under rule 50 noting
Iran is providing cooperation beyond what is required, and
that the majority of outstanding issues have been clarified.
Cuba said the Board should not impose artificial deadlines
and had approved the work plan's sequential approach. Cuba
characterized suspension as a voluntary effort to build
confidence and should not a precondition, and called for the
return of the Iran file to the Agency. Cuba concluded by
condemning U.S. hegemony, threats of sanctions and
saber-rattling. In the same vein, Venezuela expressed
concern that the UNSC had taken over the IAEA's mandate,
commended Iran's cooperation and opposed sanctions.

12. (SBU) UNSC Members: South Africa gave a more balanced
assessment while highlighting positive aspects of the report.
Governor Minty encouraged intensification of Iranian
cooperation and noted the need to build confidence in its
present activities and implement the AP. South Africa
supported a double time out and "was aware of" the UNSCRs.
South Africa saw the following weeks as a last opportunity
and called upon Iran to resolve outstanding issues without
delay but opposed the imposition of artificial deadlines.
Encouraged by progress in the work plan, Indonesia (under
rule 50) believed Iran should be given the opportunity to
continue cooperation. Indonesia called upon Iran to
undertake additional confidence building measures, including
the AP, but made no mention of UNSCRs. While associating
itself with the NAM, Ghana was encouraged by progress on the
work plan and gave credence to Iranian negotiator Jalili's
assurances that the program was peaceful, though it noted the
Agency's diminishing knowledge. Ghana affirmed NPT rights
but called for fulfillment of legal obligations under UNSC
and Board resolutions to avoid the imposition of punitive
measures on a fellow NAM country.

UNVIE VIEN 00000710 004.2 OF 008

13. (SBU) Other NAM members also gave mixed assessments. The
Philippines and Thailand highlighted some positive
developments in the work plan but Thailand noted reactive
cooperation and diminishing knowledge. Both the Philippines
and Thailand called for compliance with Board and UNSC

14. (SBU) India and Pakistan were weak. Pakistan said the DG
should be allowed to implement the work plan without
artificial deadlines. India saw the DG's report as a
"hopeful account of progress" though it noted that Iran must
address concerns in key paragraphs of the report. India took
the opportunity to highlight the report's insights on the
uninterrupted operations of the AQ Khan network in recent
years and to call for more scrutiny of this network.

15. (SBU) Latin America: Chile, Ecuador and Argentina called
for compliance with legally binding UNSC and Board
resolutions. Ecuador qualified affirmation of NPT rights
with legal obligations. Argentina and Ecuador acknowledged
progress in the work plan while calling for proactive
cooperation; Ecuador also called for more time. Argentina's
statement was relatively tepid while Chile was strongest in
noting that work plan implementation was insufficient to
build confidence, expecting more significant progress, and
expressed concern about diminishing knowledge. Brazil,
Mexico and Bolivia gave short statements and made no mention
of UNSCRs but Mexico referred to the Board's request for
suspension and the AP.

Arab Delegations

16. (SBU) Morocco, Algeria, Iraq, Libya, and Egypt all made
statements calling for additional cooperation by Iran, but
also praised Iran's cooperation thus far. Morocco's
statement was balanced by first emphasizing satisfaction with
the work plan progress and then encouraging Iran to promote
the necessary conditions for a peaceful resolution by
implementing all confidence-building measures called for by
the UNSC. Algeria was more forward-leaning in commending
Iranian cooperation and the work plan, which it said had
achieved concrete results on a number of issues, and then
called for Iran to continue this positive trend on the three
remaining outstanding issues. Iraq's statement expressed
full support for the NAM statement, noting positive
cooperation and the need for more time to make conclusions.
Iraq acknowledged NPT rights but urged Iran to comply with
Board and other resolutions of international legitimacy and
voluntarily implement the Additional Protocol.

17. (SBU) Non-board member Libya focused largely on the right
to the peaceful uses of nuclear technology (mentioning it at
least five times) and reiterated the IAEA's role as the sole
competent authority on these issues. Noting tensions in the
Middle East, Libya called for the removal of all WMD in the
region and affirmed that dialogue should replace threats and
sanctions. Egypt, also not a board member, welcomed progress
made by the work plan and noted the dangers of political
interventions by certain parties. Egypt called for a nuclear
weapons free zone in the Middle-East and then condemned
Israel for its criticism in the press of the DG. Prompted by
Egypt's criticism, Israel intervened by first noting Iran's
many violations of the NPT, its Safeguards Agreement, and
UNSCRs. Israel then responded to Egypt's comments by quoting
a recent GOI statement on the IAEA, which was not
specifically disparaging of the DG as had been mentioned by
"certain non-Board members picking up on media headings."

Iran's Riposte

18. (SBU) Iran took the opportunity to highlight how its
cooperation with the IAEA, especially with regard to the work
plan, has gone even beyond its legal obligations. Iran
reiterated several times that the outstanding issues of
plutonium, uranium metal document-emphasizing the provision
was well in advance of the timeline set out in the work
plan-and past P1/P2 centrifuge issues are all now "closed."
It then went on to repeatedly argue how the nuclear issue's
referral to the UN Security Council and the following

UNVIE VIEN 00000710 005.2 OF 008

resolutions, including suspension, had no "legal and
technical basis," particularly since the original reasons for
the referral -- source forcontamination at Natanz and past
P1/P2issues -- had now been closed. Iran also stressed that
it is voluntarily dealing with present issues such as the
Safeguards Approach and Facility Attachment for Natanz,
despite its original agreement made to deal only with past
issues. Irn noted that the "political motivations" of the
western countries, specifically the US, has created a
deadlock, and warned, once again, that any development
outside the framework of the IAEA would have a negative
impact on the current constructive process.

19. (SBU) In addition to its prepared national statement,
Iran decided to address some of the comments made by other
member states during the Board. Iran remarked that on the
eve of every Board when there has been a "great
break-trough" between Iran and the IAEA, the US raises
baseless allegations, and France, the UK and Australia "put
fuel to increase the flame." Iran described how its agreement
with the EU3 on suspension had originally only included
enrichment, but then morphed to include conversion, research
and development, and manufacturing of centrifuge omponents.
Iran then realized that there was a hidden agenda -- a UN
Security Council referral to impose sanctions and punitive
measures. So, Iran had no choce but to stop suspension and
voluntary implementation of the Additional Protocol, which
was not legally binding anyway. Iran also pointed out that
its cooperation with the IAEA has been proactive, as was
noted by the DG in his opening statement when he called for
more proactive cooperation. There had been a
misunderstanding with the word reactive because the DG cannot
call for more proactive cooperation if Iran already had not
been proactive to begin with. Iran claimed the reason the DG
used the word "reactive" was that the work plan calls for the
IAEA to ask questions and Iran to provide answers, thus the
process is necessarily reactive. Iran ended by wishing
everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Chair's Summary

20. (SBU) The Board noted with appreciation the DG's report
on Iran and commended the DG and the Secretariat for its
impartial and professional efforts. The Chairman noted that
several members recalled the work plan as a significant step
forward and noted Iran needs to address all issues in a full
and timely manner, especially the ones that have yet to be
resolved that include military applications. Several members
noted with satisfaction Iran's implementation of the work
plan thus far, including the IAEA's findings of Iran's past
P1/P2 centrifuge issues to be consistent with its
information, and Iran's provision of access to people and
documents in a timely manner. Several members expressed
regret that Iran's cooperation has been reactive and called
for Iran's active and full transparency and to provide these
assurances in the next few weeks. Several members had
serious concerns that Iran failed to comply with UNSC
resolutions, and called on Iran to suspend nuclear-related
activities, implement the Additional Protocol, and reverse
its decision to unilaterally suspend Code 3.1. Several
members expressed concern that the IAEA's knowledge on
current activities is diminishing, but welcomed the
completion of the Facility Attachment for Natanz. The Chair
also noted that several members differentiated between Iran's
voluntary and legal binding measures and stated that the IAEA
has the sole competent authority for verification and
rejected undue pressure and interference from third parties.
The Chair noted the offer presented to Iran in June 2006 by
the six countries and encouraged a peaceful negotiated
solution to this issue.

U.S. Statement

21. (SBU) Begin Text:

Mr. Chairman,

The United States Government once again commends the IAEA
Secretariat for its thorough and professional efforts to

execute the IAEA's safeguards mandate in Iran, to verify

UNVIE VIEN 00000710 006.2 OF 008

whether Iran has ended its noncompliance with its Safeguards
Agreement and Subsidiary Arrangements, to verify whether Iran
has stopped violating legally-binding resolutions of the
United Nations Security Council, and to clarify the many
questions that remain concerning the scope and nature of
Iran's nuclear program.

Mr. Chairman,

The UN Security Council, acting unanimously, has twice
adopted resolutions under Chapter VII, Article 41 of the UN
Charter imposing sanctions intended to persuade Iran to
comply with its international nuclear obligations, cooperate
with IAEA verification efforts, and enter into constructive
negotiations with the EU-3, the United States, Russia and
China in the context of the June 2006 offer.

At the last meeting of this Board, the Secretariat presented
us with a plan to address Iran's outstanding verification
issues, in what appeared to be an attempt to comply with one
of the Security Council's demands. I joined many delegations
at that time in expressing both hope and skepticism. We
hoped that this would mark a turning point in Iran's
relationship with the Agency, and that Iran's leadership
would make the strategic decision to engage proactively with
the IAEA in the Agency's execution of its safeguards mandate
and beyond, as necessary, to verify the exclusively peaceful
nature of Iran's nuclear program.

We were skeptical because we remember how many times Iran has
pledged to provide the IAEA with the full, necessary
transparency and cooperation, pledges that were invariably
timed to prevent international sanctions, pledges that were
invariably left unfulfilled. I will not recount the full
litany of Iran's disregard for its international legal
obligations and the concerns of the international community.
But I will recall that exactly four years ago, in November
2003, the Board's resolution acknowledged the stated
intentions of the President of Iran's Atomic Energy Agency on
behalf of Iran to "provide a full picture of its nuclear
activities," and his affirmation of Iran's "decision to
implement a policy of cooperation and full transparency."
Yet, less than a year later, the Board was faced with a
report by the Director General indicating Iran's refusal to
answer all of its questions and fully cooperate with the
Agency's investigation.

We have seen this before: Promises of full cooperation under
international pressure. Selective cooperation and
backsliding when the pressure comes off.

Nevertheless, when we last met, we once more expressed hope
that Iran would provide the IAEA the full transparency
necessary to bring it into compliance with its safeguards
obligations and to begin to restore international confidence
in the exclusively peaceful nature of its nuclear program.

Mr. Chairman,

I regret to say that the Board can only be disappointed in
Iran's incomplete cooperation. The Director General's
report of 15 November 2007 notes that while some cooperation
has been provided and that some clarifications have been
made, several areas remain unresolved and Iran's overall
cooperation has been selective. Specific examples include:

-- Iran's failure to provide access to or information on
Iran's work with advanced centrifuge designs;

-- The lack of closure of the issues associated with Iran's
Physics Research Center (PHRC) at Lavizan;

-- The IAEA's inability to confirm Iran's version of events
with regard to the "1993 offer" of additional assistance with
its centrifuge pursuits; and,

-- Iran's refusal to acknowledge its continuing obligation to
provide early declaration of any intent to construct new
nuclear facilities or modify existing ones, as is required by
Code 3.1 of the Subsidiary Arrangement to its Safeguards
Agreement. This has direct relevance to the concern that
Iran may seek to develop new facilities without adequate and
timely declaration to the Agency.

UNVIE VIEN 00000710 007.2 OF 008

The Director General reports that Iran has failed to suspend
its proliferation sensitive nuclear activities, as required
by the Security Council, and to implement the Additional
Protocol. Despite four years of intensive investigation, and
the launch of this work plan four months ago, the IAEA
remains unable to confirm the absence of undeclared nuclear
activities in Iran. Most disturbingly, the IAEA secretariat
has stated that, as a direct result of Iran's failure to
implement the Additional Protocol, its knowledge of Iran's
nuclear program is "diminishing."

Mr. Chairman,

We have always stated that Iran should be judged by its
actions, not by its words. The Iranian leadership says it
wants to clear up the outstanding questions and restore
confidence in its nuclear program. We note, however, that a
government determined to clear up questions about its nuclear
program would be proactive, not reactive, in providing
information to the inspectors. It would provide the
inspectors immediate access to all its files, to all the
people involved in the program, and to all the facilities
which have been engaged. It would not make distinctions
between past and present activities.

Instead, Iran's approach to explaining the past has been
reactive, and the Secretariat's understanding of Iran's
current program continues to diminish. The DG remains unable
to resolve questions regarding the intent of Iran's nuclear
program, including whether or not it is for exclusively
peaceful purposes. In particular, the IAEA remains unable to
draw any conclusions as to the "original underlying nature of
parts" of Iran's nuclear program, including its centrifuge
work. Moreover, fundamentally, the IAEA is not in a position
to assure the Board that Iran's declarations are correct and

Under international pressure, Iran has shed more light on its
activities in the 1980s and 1990s, but the Agency knows less
and less about what it is doing today - other than expanding
its capacity for uranium enrichment in violation of Security
Council resolutions. This does not meet the test of full

In the report, we see again the promise of future
transparency "in the next few weeks." While we respect the
Secretariat's efforts, and hope Iran will use the next few

weeks to demonstrate openness and transparency, we fear that
the next few weeks will not yield much more from Iran than
we've seen in the last few months or, for that matter, the
last five years. I hope I am wrong about this. Iran's
consistent policy of selective cooperation and delay tactics
suggest, however, that Iran means only to distract the world
from its continued development in violation of UN Security
Council resolutions of fissile material production
capabilities -- from uranium enrichment to the production of

Mr. Chairman,

In its last resolution on Iran, the UN Security Council
established its intent to adopt additional measures should
Iran not comply with its demands. The P5 1 Foreign Ministers
subsequently delayed those measures pending November reports
from both the DG and the EU High Representative. Unless both
the DG and Javier Solana's report a "positive outcome" of
their efforts, the P5 1 Foreign Ministers agreed on 28
September to bring a third sanctions resolution to a vote in
the Security Council. Specifically, Iran needed to implement
the Additional Protocol, resolve all outstanding issues with
its centrifuge program, and suspend its
proliferation-sensitive nuclear activities to avoid such
action. The DG's report clearly states that Iran has failed
to meet these conditions.

Mr. Chairman,

The Security Council process is designed to persuade Iran to
negotiate on the basis of the generous six-country offer of
June 2006. This package, which promises Iran significant
technical assistance, economic advantages, and an end to its
increasing isolation, remains on the table.

UNVIE VIEN 00000710 008.2 OF 008

Despite our continued disappointments, we hope that Iran's
leaders will finally decide to make a full disclosure of
Iran's past and present nuclear activities. We join the
members of the Board in urging Iran to heed the Director
General's call to implement the Additional Protocol and to
suspend all enrichment-related activities. We urge Iran's
government to take advantage of the opportunity to resolve
all outstanding issues with the IAEA, to build confidence in
Iran's nuclear program through suspension, and to enter into
negotiations toward a political settlement. Only in this way
can the interests of the Iranian people be satisfied and the
serious concerns of the international community be fully

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

End Text.

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