Iran has increased the transparency in its nuclear enrichment program, but has not shown enough evidence to demonstrate its goals are peaceful, the UN nuclear watchdog said Friday. 


director-general Mohamed ElBaradei, seen in this 2007 photo, presented his findings Friday. ((Hans Punz/Associated Press) )

The findings of the report, presented Friday by International Atomic Energy Agency director-general Mohamed ElBaradei to the agency's board of governors in Vienna, could bolster calls in the UN Security Council for a fresh set of sanctions against Iran.

The report outlined the state of ElBaradei's investigation into Iran's nuclear past, including experiments, materials and documents that could be linked to a weapons program.

In a statement accompanying the report, ElBaradei said there has been "quite good progress" on other issues, such as Iran's long-delayed decision to grant monitors access to its nuclear component development sites.

But the report also said Tehran has shown no movement forward on key topics, including alleged experiments and research that the United States and other Western powers have said show the regime was trying to develop nuclear weapons.

"Iran in the last few months has provided us with visits to many places that enable us to have a clearer picture of Iran's current program," ElBaradei said. "However, that is not, in my view, sufficient."

Report backs up Iran's claims, official says

According to the Reuters news agency, Iran's chief nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili, said the IAEA report proved what Iran has insisted all along — that its nuclear research is for peaceful purposes.

"This report is another document which proves the Iranian nation was right about the nature of its nuclear activities," Reuters quoted him as saying.

Last fall, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad declared the nuclear issue was "closed" and vowed to defy any UN sanctions.

The report comes a day after Britain and France formally introduced a Security Council resolution calling for a third round of sanctions against Iran for its failure to suspend uranium enrichment.

Under the proposed new sanctions, all countries would have to ban the entry or transit of individuals involved in Iran's nuclear program — a step up from a previous call for vigilance over their travel.

For the first time, trade in equipment and technology that can be used in both civilian and nuclear programs would also be banned.

With files from the Associated Press