(Bloomberg) – International observers are monitoring Iran’s rapidly expanding nuclear program with mounting alarm, as Tehran refuses to extend an expired inspections pact and insists experts must trust the country to document accurately. uranium enrichment activities.
Iran claims it still has the levels recorded by the monitoring team of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), said director general Rafael Mariano Grossi in an interview in Rio de Janeiro. However, officials have decided not to give investigators access until Iran advances talks with world powers to restore the broader 2015 agreement that lifted sanctions.
“It is a very uncomfortable situation for us because this guarantee is informal in nature and we do not know if it is real or not,” Grossi said Monday. “However, we have no other choice.”
The agreement reached six years ago that restricted Iran’s nuclear activities has collapsed since then-President Donald Trump withdrew the United States in 2018. After Trump reimposed sanctions, Iran began to push the limits of its nuclear work , and now has a quantity of highly enriched uranium very close to that needed to build a warhead.
“We need to verify that all this material in those higher grades will continue to be for peaceful uses,” Grossi said. “The only way to do that is by cooperating with the IAEA. If they don’t, they would be outside the law ”.
While the Biden Administration, along with China, France, Germany, Russia and the United Kingdom, have been trying since April to revive the 2015 agreement without success, diplomats are expected to meet again next month after the New Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, a hard-line cleric, comes to power.
Original Note: Alarm Grows on Iran Nuclear Program Among Sidelined Monitors (1)
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