Ahmadinejad, Iran - AP archive - 18.5.10
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Iran, Tuesday, May 18, 2010. Photo by AP
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Iran rejected as "politically motivated" a report by the UN nuclear watchdog on Tuesday in which the Islamic Republic was accused of working on developing an atomic bomb design, the semi-official Fars news agency reported.

"The report of the International Atomic Energy Agency is unbalanced, unprofessional and politically motivated," Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran's envoy to the IAEA, was quoted as saying.

The Vienna-based IAEA said the data "indicates that Iran has carried out activities relevant to the development of a nuclear explosive device".

Major powers accuse Iran of trying to build bombs under cover of a civilian nuclear program. Tehran denies this, saying it needs nuclear technology to generate electricity.

"The IAEA is one of the most credible, thorough, important UN organizations out there," State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said in response to Iranian assertions that the IAEA report is not credible.

"This is the director general of the IAEA's report. It is based on inputs from the IAEA's own cadre of inspectors and analysts, as well as inputs from some 10, 15 member states. So we would obviously reject that assertion. Iran should give the IAEA full access, full cooperation, full transparency that it has been asking for and that it has not received."

The United States and its allies are expected to seize on the report to press for more punitive sanctions on the major oil producer over its record of hiding sensitive nuclear activity and lack of full cooperation with UN inspectors.

Soltanieh said the IAEA report did not contain any new issues.

"Despite Iran's readiness for negotiations, the IAEA published the report ... which will harm its reputation," Soltanieh said.