Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency appeared to gain little traction last week in clearing the way for a stalled nuclear probe, despite positive statements by participants, envoys told Reuters on Wednesday.
Last Friday’s meeting was the 11th between Iran and the IAEA since early last year to consider potential ground rules for the U.N. nuclear watchdog to look into intelligence findings that the Middle Eastern nation once may have engaged scientific activities relevant to atomic-arms development. The alleged work could include nuclear-relevant explosives tests, as well as work on a nuclear-bomb trigger at its Parchin military base.
Iranian delegates to last week’s Iran-IAEA talks — the first held under Iranian President Hassan Rouhani — said Tehran hopes to break significant ground on the matter in a matter of months, according to an informed diplomat. However, previous hints at forward movement ultimately led nowhere, multiple envoys said.
Iran and the U.N. organization are next slated to meet on Oct. 28, following two days of separate atomic discussions between Tehran and six major governments. The five permanent U.N. Security Council member nations and Germany for years have sought more concrete assurances that Iran’s nuclear program is not supporting development of a weapon capability.
A Senate panel is not expected to consider a House-passed Iran sanctions bill for several more weeks, at least, possibly placing any debate on the legislation after Iran’s scheduled meeting with the “P-5+1” nations, Reuters reported separately on Tuesday.
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"Some Republicans are running so far away from their party’s nominee that they are threatening to sue TV stations for running ads that suggest they support Donald Trump. Just two weeks before Election Day, five Republicans―Reps. Bob Dold (R-Ill.), Mike Coffman (R-Colo.), David Jolly (R-Fla.), John Katko (R-N.Y.) and Brian Fitzpatrick, a Pennsylvania Republican running for an open seat that’s currently occupied by his brother―contend that certain commercials paid for by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee provide false or misleading information by connecting them to the GOP nominee. Trump is so terrible, these Republicans are essentially arguing, that tying them to him amounts to defamation."
Former Illinois GOP Congressman Aaron Schock "recently agreed to pay a $10,000 fine for making an excessive solicitation for a super PAC that was active in his home state of Illinois four years ago." Schock resigned from Congress after a story about his Downton Abbey-themed congressional office raised questions about how he was using taxpayer dollars.
If you need a marker for how confident Hillary Clinton is at this point of the race, here's one: CNN's Jeff Zeleny reports "she's been talking to Republican senators, old allies and new, saying that she is willing to work with them and govern."
On Tuesday, President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines threatened to kick U.S. troops out of the country, adding that if he remains president for more than one term he will move to terminate all military deals with America. Last week, Duterte called for a separation between the two countries, though other government officials immediately said he did not mean that literally.