IAEA: Iran Ahead of Schedule on Implementing Nuclear Deal

Halves 20 Percent Enriched Uranium Stockpile

The interim nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 is looking better and better today, as the International Atomic Energy Agency has confirmed Iran is actually well ahead of schedule in implementing the terms of the pact.

The primary metric they are judging that on is the 20 percent enriched uranium stockpile, which Iran has cut in half since the deal began to be implemented. The terms of the pact are that Iran get rid of the rest of the stockpile by mid-July.

Most of Iran’s enrichment is at 3.5 percent, the level needed for its Bushehr power plant’s reactor. The 20 percent fuel was created in an attempt to make fuel rods for the aging Tehran Research Reactor (TRR), and Iran stopped enriching to that level once they had enough fuel to make rods for it for its conceivable lifespan.

The TRR was built by the United States in the 1960s and provides Iran with materially all of its medical isotopes. The under-construction Arak Heavy Water Reactor, which runs on unenriched uranium, is seen as its eventual replacement, though Western nations have complained about the byproducts of the reactor including small amounts of plutonium.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.