Falsely reported in multiple outlets as Iran greatly increasing its uranium enrichment, the Iranian government has informed the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) that they are increasing their production of uranium hexaflouride, the feedstock used in centrifuges.
Under the P5+1 nuclear deal, Iran is allowed to produce a certain amount of low-enriched uranium in the centrifuges, which take the feedstock and produce fuel for Iran’s Bushehr nuclear power plant. The uranium is enriched to around 4%, far below the 90-95% needed for weapons-grade uranium.
The European Union confirmed that they’ve been informed of the changes by the Iranians, and that there is no violation of the nuclear deal in this move. They added, however, that the timing was bad, coming so soon after the US withdrew from the nuclear deal.
Yet Iran never had any enrichment anywhere near weapons-grade levels, even before the nuclear deal. The limitations placed on this purely civilian program is something no other nation has had imposed on them under safeguards agreements. Concerns about Iran’s enrichment seem to largely be attempts to catch them in technical violations, since no proliferation risk has ever existed there.
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