By Louis Charbonneau UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - Beefing up international monitoring of Iran's nuclear work could become the biggest stumbling block to a final accord between Tehran and major powers, despite a preliminary deal reached last week. As part of that deal, Iran and the powers agreed that United Nations inspectors would have "enhanced" access to remaining nuclear activity in Iran, where they already monitor key sites. But details on exactly what kind of access the inspectors will have were left for the final stage of talks, posing a major challenge for negotiators on a complex and logistically challenging issue that is highly delicate for Iran's leaders. Securing proper inspections is crucial for the United States and other Western powers to ensure a final deal, due by June 30, is effective and to persuade a skeptical U.S. Congress and Israel to accept the agreement. Iran says its nuclear program is peaceful, but it has never welcomed intrusive inspections and has in the past kept some nuclear sites secret. Sharply differing interpretations have emerged on what was covered by last week's framework agreement - a sign of what diplomats and nuclear experts say will be tough talks ahead. Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has the final say for Iran on the deal, on Thursday ruled out any "extraordinary supervision measures" over nuclear activities and said military sites could not be inspected. That appeared to contradict a U.S. "fact sheet" issued after last week's marathon talks in Switzerland which said the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) would have "regular access to all Iran's nuclear activities" and to the supply chain that supports it, as well as a joint Iranian-European Union statement that said the IAEA would have expanded access in Iran. Aside from the question of Iranian consent, the logistical requirements for increased monitoring of Iranian sites would be daunting. It would involve more cameras, on-site inspections, satellite surveillance and other methods and might require the IAEA to assign more people and resources to its Iran team. David Albright, president of the Institute for Science and International Security, said it was crucial to come up with a mechanism for "anytime, anywhere" inspections that go beyond the IAEA's own special arrangements for short-notice inspections, known as the Additional Protocol. The Additional Protocol was created in the 1990s, after the discovery of Iraq's secret nuclear weapons program and revelations that North Korea and Romania had separated plutonium, as a means of smoking out covert arms-related activities. "It’s extremely difficult for Iran," said Albright, himself a former U.N. weapons inspector. "They don’t want it. They want to keep smuggling (nuclear-related dual-use items). They’re buying a lot of things, and they’re not going to want to stop." "BIG FIGHTS" AHEAD Last week's framework accord between Iran, the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China cleared the way for talks on a final settlement by a June 30 deadline. The aim is to block an Iranian path to a nuclear bomb in return for lifting sanctions on Tehran. The framework would require Iran to mothball most of its installed enrichment centrifuges and curtail uranium enrichment and other sensitive work for at least a decade. The plan calls for IAEA-monitored storage by Iran of thousands of centrifuges and other infrastructure. Among the splits that have already emerged in the Iranian and Western interpretations of the deal are timing of sanctions relief and the removal of U.N. sanctions, as well as monitoring. "I believe monitoring and inspections may prove to be the most difficult nut to crack and I wouldn't be surprised if Iran and the P5+1 (six powers) have some big fights about it," a senior diplomatic source told Reuters condition of anonymity. The interim deal makes clear that broader inspections will be mandatory for Iran. The joint EU-Iranian statement said that the IAEA "will have enhanced access through agreed procedures, including to clarify past and present issues." Iran signed the Additional Protocol in 2003, a year after the existence of its Natanz enrichment site and Arak heavy-water production facility was revealed. Tehran began voluntarily implementing the protocol but never ratified it. It eventually stopped implementing it. U.S. State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf told reporters in Washington on Wednesday that Iran had agreed that it would resume implementation of the Additional Protocol and would submit it for ratification. But Olli Heinonen, the IAEA's former chief nuclear inspector who is now at Harvard University, said Additional Protocol inspections would likely not be enough for proper monitoring. The Additional Protocol has limitations, experts say, such as not covering research by Iran that the IAEA is investigating and which Western countries believe was linked to weaponization. Heinonen said there would have to be a new comprehensive Iranian declaration about its nuclear program that also includes information about Iranian cooperation with foreign states. "You need some provision about nuclear cooperation with other countries given the stories about cooperation with North Korea," Heinonen said. Jacqueline Shire, a non-proliferation expert and former member of the U.N. Security Council's Panel of Experts on Iran, said resolving questions about the so-called "possible military dimensions" of Iran's past nuclear activities was crucial but extremely difficult. "Iran will have to engage with the IAEA on this in a way it has not, up to this point, been willing to," she said. Heinonen, Albright and Shire said that failure to address the possible military dimensions could undermine confidence in any monitoring and inspection regime. "If you leave PMD unresolved, then there could be many unknowns," Heinonen said. (This version of the story has been refiled to clarify editorial insertion in David Albright quote to "nuclear-related dual-use items," not "nuclear materials", in 11th paragraph) (Editing by Stuart Grudgings)
- The Independent
Voices: Ron DeSantis doesn’t think federal funds should be used for hurricane relief — except in Florida
In January 2013, the newly elected Congressman DeSantis opposed a $9.7 billion flood insurance aid package to help the victims of Hurricane Sandy in New York and New Jersey. He said the victims had his sympathy, but that sending them the federal funds was not ‘fiscally responsible’
- Panthers Wire
In a scenario straight out of a video game, we'd have the Panthers snatching QB Kyler Murray away from the Cardinals in Week 4's "Player Prowl."
- Business Insider
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- The Daily Beast
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- Miami Herald
The images that have come out of Southwest Florida — during and after Hurricane Ian — are jarring.
KYIV (Reuters) -Ukrainian troops said on Saturday they had taken the key bastion of Lyman in occupied eastern Ukraine, a stinging defeat that prompted a close ally of President Vladimir Putin to call for the possible use of low-grade nuclear weapons. The capture came just a day after Putin proclaimed the annexation of four Ukrainian regions - including Donetsk, where Lyman is located - and placed them under Russia's nuclear umbrella, at a ceremony that was condemned by Kyiv and the West as an illegitimate farce.
- Rolling Stone
The former president howled about the Senate Minority Leader and made a racist remark about former Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao
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- Associated Press
After being encircled by Ukrainian forces, Russia pulled troops out Saturday from an eastern Ukrainian city that it had been using as a front-line hub. It was the latest victory for the Ukrainian counteroffensive that has humiliated and angered the Kremlin. Russia’s withdrawal from Lyman complicates its internationally vilified declaration just a day earlier that it had annexed four regions of Ukraine — an area that includes Lyman.
- Detroit Free Press
Detroit Lions DT Isaiah Buggs, who played two seasons with Tua Tagovailoa at Alabama, 'was shook' watching the QB's brain injury happen on TV.
- E! News
Miami Dolphins Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa Hospitalized for Head and Neck Injuries Sustained During Game
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As Donald Trump and his eldest kids Donald Jr., Ivanka, and Eric tend to their $250 million business fraud lawsuit in New York, the three adult children are handling the legal situation in their own unique ways. Ivanka is choosing a much different strategy than her brothers by completely ignoring the drama publicly. Ivanka is […]
Visual guide to powerful Hurricane Ian, which has caused devastation in Cuba and Florida
- Ukrayinska Pravda
KATERYNA TYSHCHENKO - FRIDAY, 30 SEPTEMBER 2022, 21:09 Dmitry Medvedev, the Deputy Chairman of the Russian Security Council, believes that Ukraine's accession to NATO will accelerate the outbreak of World War III.
- The Hill
Former President Trump is headed to Michigan on Saturday for the latest in a series of campaign rallies. But the event, to be held in Warren, will only sharpen questions about whether Trump’s influence is backfiring against the GOP in general election campaigns. The most prominent candidate Trump has backed in the Wolverine State, conservative…
- The Hill
Missouri Senate candidate Eric Schmitt (R) is leading Democratic challenger Trudy Busch Valentine by 11 percentage points, according to a new Emerson College Polling-The Hill survey released Friday. The poll of likely Missouri voters showed 49 percent of respondents saying they would support Schmitt if the Senate election were held today compared to Busch Valentine…
- The Daily Beast
Joe Raedle/GettyRescue crews going house to house in Florida in the wake of Hurricane Ian have encountered harrowing scenes, including scores of stranded people and at least one house that was completely submerged with human remains inside.Kevin Guthrie, Florida’s emergency management director, said during a Friday morning press briefing that authorities are reviewing 21 fatalities to see if they’re related to the catastrophic hurricane. The death toll is expected to rise as many parts of Lee Co
- CBS News
Tropical Storm Orlene became a hurricane Saturday.
35 Pictures And Videos That Show The Catastrophic Damage Caused By The Storm Surge From Hurricane Ian
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