Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Iran restricts international inspections of nuclear facilities


  • The international organization is to have blocked access to surveillance cameras at nuclear facilities
  • Iran recently returned to uranium enrichment to 20%. a fissile isotope, which he hadn’t done in years
  • In 2018, the then US President, Donald Trump, denounced the agreement with Iran concluded during the Barack Obama era and imposed sanctions on the country
  • More information can be found on the Onet.pl home page

Few details have been released other than confirmation that Iran has fulfilled its threat of restricting cooperation with inspectors from the United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Iran said it plans to end the implementation of the “Additional Protocol”, a confidential agreement between Tehran and the IAEA reached under the 2015 landmark nuclear deal, which grants UN inspectors increased powers to visit nuclear facilities and observe Iran’s nuclear program.

It is not clear to what extent access to these facilities will be restricted. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the IAEA would be blocked from accessing the network of surveillance cameras at these facilities. The Iranian Atomic Energy Organization, the civilian nuclear agency, has promised to keep the tapes for three months and then forward them to the IAEA, but only if sanctions are relaxed.

Iran is increasing pressure on Biden

In May 2018, then-US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew his country from the nuclear deal and re-imposed sanctions on Iran that paralyzed its economy.

To increase pressure on the administration of his successor Joe Biden, Iran has announced a gradual withdrawal from the nuclear deal. In early January this year. The IAEA has confirmed that Iran has resumed enrichment of uranium to 20%. the content of the fissile isotope U-235 in the mountain’s hidden fuel enrichment plant at Fordo, something it has not done since the nuclear deal to end its military nuclear program.

Experts indicate that this step is still far from obtaining 90 percent pure uranium that can be used to build nuclear weapons. And last week, Iranian authorities notified the IAEA of its intention to install additional IR-2M high-tech gas centrifuges at the underground uranium enrichment facility at Natanz. According to experts, this would deepen the violation of the nuclear pact.

Ayatollah takes the floor

On Monday, Iran’s highest spiritual and political leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, announced that his country did not intend to capitulate to US pressure on the nuclear program. Khamenei said Iran could enrich uranium up to 60 percent. cleanliness if necessary, but reiterated that the country prohibits the production of nuclear weapons. Tehran has long maintained that its nuclear program serves peaceful purposes such as energy production and medical research.

IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi traveled to Tehran last weekend to negotiate inspection restrictions. As part of an interim agreement, Grossi said the IAEA would keep the same number of inspectors in place, but Iranian restrictions would affect the inspectors’ ability to conduct unannounced inspections of nuclear facilities. Iran’s blocking of the IAEA’s camera access also means the agency cannot monitor Iranian activities when inspectors are not physically on site.

Also read: Tehran’s secret contacts with Washington. An intermediary of the Swiss embassy

(mt)



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