The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the UN's nuclear watchdog, will visit Iran on Sunday for talks with senior officials there, Reuters reported on Wednesday.
Yukiya Amano, the director general of the IAEA, will discuss Iran’s implementation of the 2015 nuclear agreement.
The visit comes during a dispute between Washington and Tehran over U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision this month not to certify Iranian compliance with the landmark nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers.
Amano, whose agency is in charge of policing those restrictions, has defended the agreement as a “net gain” for nuclear verification and said Iran’s commitments under the deal are being implemented.
Earlier this month, Amano affirmed Iran's commitment to the 2015 nuclear deal. An IAEA report released last month had also affirmed Iran's compliance with the nuclear deal, which froze some of Tehran's nuclear activities.
The IAEA, in its announcement of Amano's trip to Iran, did not mention Trump’s refusal to certify Iran was complying with the agreement.
European Union leaders have reaffirmed their commitment to the agreement, hoping that Congress will prevent the deal from collapsing.
Iranian officials have blasted Trump over his decision not to certify the deal. Iran's Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, warned Trump of a "reciprocal measure" if sanctions were reimposed on his country.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has threatened to expand Iran's ballistic missile program in response to Trump's move.
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has said Tehran will stick to the agreement as long as the other signatories do, but will “shred” the deal if Washington pulls out.