Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran’s representative to the UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) since 2005, announced his resignation on 22 August 2013.
Ali Asghar Soltanieh, holds a doctorate in nuclear science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and headed Iran's Atomic Energy Organisation between 2009 and 2010.
Ali Asghar Soltanieh has played a key role in defending Iran's nuclear program as peaceful and denying allegations that Tehran wants to possess atomic arms. However, during his time as representative there have been fruitless negotiations with the International Atomic Energy agency.
Western countries and Israel suspect Iran's nuclear program is a cover for developing atomic weapons, which Tehran strongly denies. The IAEA has been investigating Iran’s program for the past decade. Iran has faced several international sanctions for its refusal to stop enriching uranium, a process key to creating a nuclear weapon.
Who: Ali Asghar Soltanieh
When: 22 August 2013