Richard Beeston and Catherine Philp
Tuesday, Nov 17th, 2009
United Nations and Iranian officials have been secretly negotiating a deal to persuade world powers to lift sanctions and allow Tehran to retain the bulk of its nuclear programme in return for co-operation with UN inspectors.
According to a draft document seen by The Times, the 13-point agreement was drawn up in September by Mohamed ElBaradei, the directorgeneral of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), in an effort to break the stalemate over Iran’s nuclear programme before he stands down at the end of this month.
The IAEA denied the existence of the document, which was leaked to The Times by one of the parties alarmed at the contents. Its disclosure was made as the agency warned that Iran could be hiding multiple secret nuclear sites.
Despite the assessment, diplomats believed that Mr ElBaradei was hoping to agree the outline of a deal with Tehran that he could present to the US, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany as a solution to the impasse.
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This article was posted: Tuesday, November 17, 2009 at 11:17 am