Watchdog: Iran uranium stockpile 18 times more than 2015 deal limit
The United Nations’s nuclear watchdog said in a report that Iran has built up a stockpile of highly enriched uranium that exceeds limitations set in the now-scrapped 2015 nuclear deal between the U.S. and Tehran, according to a quarterly report from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
The report also found that Tehran was enriching uranium at three undeclared production sites.
The IAEA, an arm of the United Nations, estimates Iran now has more than 8,300 pounds of enriched uranium, far above the limit of 660 pounds set in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), or about 18 times the amount it previously had under the JCPOA, the report says, according to France 24.
Negotiations to revive the deal, which was scrapped under former President Trump, have stalled over recent months.
Iran has enriched more than 500 pounds of uranium up to 20 percent and more than 95 pounds of uranium above 60 percent, the French outlet reported. Uranium enriched to 90 percent or higher is usually considered nuclear weapons grade.
The IAEA in another report said they found nuclear material at three sites that were not declared to the nuclear watchdog agency. Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Saeed Khatibzadeh told Al Jazeera the report was “not a fair and balanced report” and “does not reflect the reality of the negotiations between Iran and the IAEA.”
Last week, President Biden’s lead negotiator on the nuclear talks gave a dim outlook on any prospects of a return to another Iran nuclear deal, telling a Senate panel that it was “tenuous at best” despite nearly one year of talks to revive the agreement.