Norwegian Diplomat: ‘Raising the Volume’ on Iran Nuke Concerns

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Ahead of another round of negotiations between the major world powers and Iran over the latter’s nuclear program, Norwegian Foreign Minister Espen Eide on Wednesday expressed his nation’s concerns about Iran’s failure to cooperate in nuclear inspections. Iran has repeatedly rebuffed efforts by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to investigate a site suspected of testing for nuclear weapons.

During a visit by Eide with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the Norwegian diplomat referenced a recent discussion with the head of the IAEA regarding Iran. “We are really concerned about the lack of cooperation and the fact that we’re allowed to go to the irrelevant sites but not to the sites we want to see,” said Eide. “This is something that we’re raising the volume on.”

The powerful P5+1—the US, the UK, France, China, Russia and Germany—are set for another round of nuclear negotiations with Iran this weekend. The first round were termed as “useful” by the world powers, while Iran claimed the West was more open to compromise in their latest proposal on the matter.

Netanyahu, in his comments with Eide, was quoted by a press release as noting that a nuclear Iran would be disastrous on a number of levels. “There are many issues in the Middle East, the issues between us and the Palestinians and our quest for peace, there are regional issues but I think they will be overshadowed if Iran believes it has a license to develop atomic weapons and it pursues the development of these weapons,” said the Israeli premier. “We have to make sure this doesn’t happen.”

(By Joshua Spurlock,, April 4, 2013)