Iran’s expansion of uranium enrichment…triple condemnation and warning of “significant” dangers

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Aden – Yasmin Abdullah Al-Tohami – Shortly after Iran announced production of 60% enriched uranium at the Fordow complex, and the US expressed “deep concern”, 3 countries entered the line.

France, Germany and Britain condemned Iran’s plans to expand its nuclear program in a joint statement presented by the British government on Tuesday, after the United Nations’ International Atomic Energy Agency said Iran was enriching uranium in two countries. stations

“Iran’s move is a challenge to the global non-proliferation regime,” the three countries said in a joint statement issued by the British government. “There is no credible civilian justification for this move, which carries significant proliferation risks.”

“We will continue to consult with international partners on the best way to address Iran’s ongoing nuclear escalation,” she added.

secret program

Iran has announced that it has moved to enrich uranium, which Western governments fear is part of a secret nuclear weapons program.

The Iranian Student News Agency (ISNA) said, “Iran has started production of 60% enriched uranium for the first time at the Fordow nuclear complex,” according to information confirmed by the head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, Mohammad Islami al- Mallouma, at a later time.

Uranium must be enriched to 90% to make a nuclear bomb, which means that enriching to 60% is a significant step towards enriching uranium to the level used in making weapons.

White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said at a press conference in Washington that the US expressed its “deep concern” on Tuesday, saying, “We will make sure that the president has all options.” “We certainly haven’t changed our view that we will not allow Iran to (get) the ability to acquire nuclear weapons.”

Iran denies that it has any ambitions to develop a nuclear bomb and insists that its nuclear activities are for civilian purposes only.

2015 Agreement

In 2015, Iran reached an accord on its nuclear program with six major powers, the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany, after years of tense and difficult negotiations.

Under the agreement, Iran agreed to stop operating the Fordow complex and limit uranium enrichment to a threshold of 3.67%, sufficient for most civilian uses, as part of a package of restrictions on its nuclear activities aimed at preventing it from developing. A nuclear weapon.

The deal allowed Iran to lift many of its sanctions in exchange for curtailing its nuclear activities and ensuring the peace of its program, but the accord’s effects have almost disappeared since former US President Donald Trump decided to unilaterally withdraw. from the deal in 2018, and reimposed tough sanctions on Iran.

gradually decline

Nearly a year after the US withdrawal, Iran has begun to gradually back away from most of its key commitments under the deal. The underground Fordow complex, located 180 km south of Tehran, was reopened in 2019 and recently upgraded to increase its efficiency.

In January 2021, Iran announced the start of 20% enrichment of uranium at the Fordow complex. In April of the same year, the Natanz complex (center) announced the start of 60% uranium enrichment.

US President Joe Biden had expressed Washington’s desire to revive the agreement and talks to this end began in April 2021, but negotiations stalled in early September 2022, with Western parties claiming that Iran’s response to the draft understanding was “constructive”.

Low stock

And late last month, U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said there was little hope of reviving the nuclear deal because of the situation the Iranian regime was currently facing, referring to the nearly two-month-old protests in the country. She was arrested by the morality police in Tehran following the death of Mahsa Amini (22 years old).

In a report released earlier this month, the International Atomic Energy Agency noted that Iran’s stockpile of enriched uranium as of Oct. 22 stood at 3,673.7 kilograms, down 267.2 kilograms from the last quarterly report.

The stockpile includes 386.4 kilograms of uranium enriched to 20% and 62.3 kilograms of uranium enriched to 60%, while the International Atomic Energy Agency complains that sanctions imposed by Iran are hampering the ability of its inspectors to monitor Iran’s growing nuclear activities.

Mojtaba Sadira

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