UN Nuclear Watchdog Chief: Fresh Round of Talks With Iran to Take Place Friday

IAEA head Yukiya Amano says agency will meet Friday with representatives of Islamic Republic; diplomats in Vienna claim Iran has not shifted its stance since Amano's visit to Tehran two weeks ago.

The UN nuclear watchdog and Iran will hold a new round of talks this week to try to reach an agreement to resume a long-stalled probe into suspected atom bomb research in the Islamic state, IAEA chief Yukiya Amano said on Monday.

Amano, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, made a rare visit to Tehran two weeks ago and said when he returned to Vienna that he expected a framework cooperation deal to be signed soon with Iran.

Western diplomats have voiced doubt that Iran will implement any such agreement with the Vienna-based UN agency, which says Tehran has stonewalled its investigation for almost four years.

"I wish to inform the board that a meeting between Iran and the agency has been scheduled for June 8 in Vienna," Amano said in a speech to the IAEA'S 35-nation governing board, according to a copy of his remarks.

"I invite Iran to sign and implement the Structured Approach document as soon as possible and to provide early access to the Parchin site," he said, referring to an agreement on how to conduct the IAEA's investigation.

The IAEA suspects that Iran had carried out research relevant to developing nuclear weapons at the Parchin military site, southeast of Tehran. Iran denies this.

Iran IAEA - AP - June 4, 2012