UN watchdog says Iran in compliance with nuke deal
search

UN watchdog says Iran in compliance with nuke deal

IAEA's announcement that Tehran has not breached thresholds set by nuclear pact comes weeks after Trump said he would decertify accord

A view of the reactor building at the Russian-built nuclear power plant in Bushehr, in southern Iran, as the first fuel is loaded, August 21, 2010. (Iran International Photo Agency via Getty Images/via JTA/File)
A view of the reactor building at the Russian-built nuclear power plant in Bushehr, in southern Iran, as the first fuel is loaded, August 21, 2010. (Iran International Photo Agency via Getty Images/via JTA/File)

VIENNA — Iran remains in compliance with the landmark 2015 nuclear deal, a UN watchdog report showed Monday, four weeks after US President Donald Trump refused to certify the agreement.

The quarterly International Atomic Energy Agency update confirmed that key parameters of Iran’s nuclear program remained within the limits of the accord with major powers.

The restricted report, seen by AFP, said Iran “has not enriched” uranium above low levels and that its stockpile of enriched uranium was under the agreed limit of 300 kilograms (660 pounds).

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani (right), welcomes UN nuclear chief Yukiya Amano for their meeting in Tehran, Iran, September 20, 2015. (AP/Vahid Salemi)

When “enriched” to a high purity, uranium can be used in a nuclear weapon. At a low purity it can be used for peaceful applications, such as power generation, Iran’s stated aim.

The new IAEA report said that the number of enrichment centrifuges installed at Iran’s Natanz site remained below the upper limit of 5,060 during the reporting period.

The volume of heavy water — a reactor coolant — remained below the agreed maximum of 130 tons throughout the past three months and on November 6 was 114.4 tons.

Iran has gone above that ceiling twice since the deal came into force in January 2016.

The interior of the Arak heavy water production facility in Arak, 360 kms southwest of Tehran, Iran, October 27, 2004. (AP Photo/Fars News Agancy, File)

Iran removed and rendered inoperable the core of the Arak reactor — which could in theory have given Iran weapons-grade plutonium, before the accord entered into force.

The IAEA assessment showed that, aside from the matter of heavy water, a relatively minor breach, Tehran has complied with the deal since its entry into force in January 2016.

However, on October 13, US President Donald Trump refused to certify the deal, saying it was not in the US national interest and leaving the accord’s fate up to Congress.

The decision gave the Republican-controlled Congress 60 days — which run out in mid-December — to decide whether to reimpose sanctions on the Islamic republic.

Trump warned that the agreement would be “terminated” at any time if US lawmakers and the other signatories fail to address its “many serious flaws.”

According to Trump, these include “sunset clauses” that see key provisions expire in 10 to 15 years, “insufficient enforcement,” and a “near total silence” on Iran’s ballistic missile program.

read more:
comments