The United States says that Iran is stockpiling enriched uranium in direct violation of restrictions placed on its nuclear program.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) disclosed on Friday that Iran had doubled its stockpile, making it capable of producing a nuclear bomb in three and a half months. The IAEA believes Iran has enough fissile material to construct two bombs.
Iran finally granted the IAEA access to several sites it had previously prevented inspectors from visiting, but along with its construction of the next generation of highly efficient centrifuges, the reality of an Iranian nuclear arsenal is all but confirmed.
A State Department official, speaking to the Washington Free Beacon only on background, said the IAEA’s report “highlights Iran’s ‘significant nonperformance’ of its commitments under the Iran deal that led the United States to take decisive action to restore U.N. sanctions on Iran.”
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The official would not comment on specific claims in the report until it is made public by the IAEA.
However, the official said there is conclusive proof that Iran is violating its commitments under the nuclear deal.
While the United States exited the nuclear deal in 2018, Iran is still a party to it. Our European partners in the deal refused to back a U.S. effort to initiate “snapback” sanctions against Iran last week at the UN, despite overwhelming evidence that Iran is cheating.
So much for Barack Obama’s solemn promise that if Iran ever cheated, the sanctions would be put back into place.
Iran’s enriched uranium store “now exceeds by 10-fold the limit set in the [nuclear deal],” according to the Institute for Science and International Security, a nuclear watchdog group that has closely tracked the IAEA’s inspections. The group said “Iran’s estimated breakout time as of September 2020 is as short as 3.5 months.”
“A new development is that Iran may have enough low enriched uranium to produce enough weapon-grade uranium for a second nuclear weapon, where the second one could be produced more quickly than the first, requiring in total as little as 5.5 months to produce enough weapon-grade uranium for two nuclear weapons,” the group said Friday.
Iran’s stockpile of fissile material includes enriched uranium returned by Russia in 2019, despite Obama’s assurance that the uranium would stay in Russia’s hands for 10 years.
And the administration shows no sign of letting up on their campaign of “maximum pressure” on Tehran.
“There is no reason for Iran to expand its nuclear program other than to engage in continued brinkmanship,” the official said. “We will continue imposing maximum pressure on the Iranian regime until it ceases its destabilizing activities and negotiates a comprehensive deal. That is why we took decisive action last month to initiate the ‘snapback’ of U.N. sanctions on Iran.”
Our European allies have given up and will allow Iran to get the bomb. They have no stomach for having sanctions “snap back” on Iran given the business deals they’ve already inked with the terrorist state.
We’ll never know if a coordinated international effort to keep Iran from getting the bomb would have stopped them because China and Russia have sought to undermine the sanctions since they were imposed in 2006 by the Security Council. While Iran’s economy has been slowed, it might have brought Tehran to its knees if those two nations had cooperated with the rest of the world.
Now, it appears to be too late.