The National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) on Iran, issued on December 3, refutes the US and Israeli accusations that Iran has a covert nuclear weapons programme. The statement vindicates Iran’s claim that the decision by the Governors Board of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to report its nuclear file to the UN Security Council in February 2006 and the subsequent Security Council resolutions and sanctions against Iran lack legitimacy.
The NIE report had been held for nearly one year in an effort by Vice President Cheney's office to force the intelligence community to remove some of the dissenting judgments on Iran's nuclear program.
Representing the views of 16 US intelligence agencies, the NIE on Iran sharply reverses its 2005 version that claimed Iran was developing nuclear weapons. The report assesses that Iran's alleged military nuclear work ended in 2003, but fails to provide any evidence that such activity ever existed. If proof for this assessment had been found, it was the obligation of the US to provide it to the IAEA for on-the-ground verification.
A senior IAEA official said today: "despite repeated smear campaigns, the IAEA has stood its ground and concluded time and again that 'there was no evidence of an undeclared nuclear weapons program in Iran'"
The IAEA on 15 November 2007 essentially cleared Iran of all outstanding ambiguities regarding its past nuclear programme. The agency confirmed that in multiple areas of concern, the information provided by Iran has been consistent with the information obtained independently by the IAEA.
Earlier, on 7 September 2007, the IAEA director general, Dr. ElBaradei, told the New York Times, “we have not come to see any undeclared activities ... We have not seen any weaponization of their program, nor have we received any information to that effect”. He has for several years urged skeptics in Western capitals to help the IAEA by sharing any possible proof in their possession of suspicious nuclear activity in Iran. Judging from the IAEA's many reports, Iran's accusers have failed to demonstrate to the agency that they have superior information. The new claim about a pre-2003 weapons program is no exception.
In the light of the new National Intelligence Estimate on Iran and the IAEA's own assurances, it is now clear that the decision by the Governors’ Board of the IAEA in February 2006 to report Iran’s file to the UN Security Council was without justification. Furthermore, in order to incriminate Iran, the US and its allies exerted massive pressure on other voting board members at the time. David Mulford, the US Ambassador to India warned the Government of India in January 2006 that there would be no US-India nuclear deal if India did not vote against Iran at the IAEA.
On February 15th, 2007, Stephen Rademaker, the then-US Assistant Secretary of State for International Security and Non-Proliferation, admitted publicly that the US coerced India to vote against Iran. Therefore, sending Iran's file to the UN Security Council and the subsequent adoption of Resolutions 1696 and 1737 had no legitimacy.
The Campaign Against Sanctions and Military Intervention in Iran (CASMII) calls for the immediate return of Iran’s nuclear file from the UN Security Council to the jurisdiction of the IAEA under the rules of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT). All UN sanctions imposed on Iran must accordingly be lifted. In addition, CASMII reiterates its long-standing call for immediate negotiations without pre-conditions between the US and Iran on all points of dispute.
For more information or to contact CASMII please visit here.