Friday, December 23, 2005

Iran’s new ambassador to IAEA submits credentials

Iran Focus: a pro-MEK website
Iran’s new ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna officially submitted his credentials to the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog director general Mohamed ElBaradei, the state-run news agency reported. READ MORE

Ali Akbar Soltanieh will replace current Iranian ambassador to the IAEA Mohammad-Mehdi Akhoundzadeh.

Soltanieh, who previously held the same post in the 1980s under the Presidency of Mir-Hossein Moussavi, has in the past been the chief of the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran (AEOI).

In recent years, he headed the politico-international bureau in the Iranian Foreign Ministry.

He had been active in negotiations with officials of the European Union over Tehran’s suspected nuclear weapons program.

Akhoundzadeh’s replacement comes after hard-line Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s Foreign Ministry summoned some 40 of Iran’s ambassadors and charge d’affaires to Tehran, in a massive purge of the country’s foreign service.

The envoys made up nearly half the fleet, including those involved in the country’s nuclear negotiations with the European troika – Britain, France, and Germany.