An advisor to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Sunday that Tehran has the “technical” means to build a nuclear weapon but stressed the Islamic Republic still hasn’t decided to do so.
Iran has never attempted to enrich uranium at the 90% level needed for weapons-grade, but Kamal Kharrazi, the head of Iran’s Strategic Foreign Relations Council, said Tehran could do so easily.
“In a few days we were able to enrich uranium up to 60% and we can easily produce 90% enriched uranium … Iran has the technical means to produce a nuclear bomb but there has been no decision by Iran to build one,” Kharrazi told Al Jazeera.
The comments come as talks between the US and Iran to revive the Iran nuclear deal, known as the JCPOA, are stalled. A US return to the JCPOA would limit Iran’s uranium enrichment to 3.67%, but President Biden has taken a hardline and refuses to lift enough sanctions to revive the accord.
Kharrazi’s comments could be an effort to bring the US back to the negotiating table, although he said that the fact that the US can’t guarantee it will stay in the JCPOA “ruins” any chance for a deal.
During his trip to the Middle East, President Biden signed a joint declaration with Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid against Iran. The declaration said that the US would use all of its “national power” to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.
Even though Biden hasn’t made much effort to revive the JCPOA, he told Lapid that he prefers diplomacy. Lapid said there must be a “credible” military threat to stop Iran from making a nuclear weapon, something he reiterated on Sunday.
“We want the basis [for world power’s negotiations with Iran] to be a credible military threat,” Lapid said at a closed-door cabinet meeting, according to Israel’s Channel 13. “We didn’t necessarily agree on this with the Americans.”
While Israel is constantly claiming Iran is racing to develop a bomb, the Iranian government has maintained a policy against developing weapons of mass destruction for decades, and there’s still no indication that’s changed. Besides trying to preserve the JCPOA, Iran is also a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty, which Israel refuses to sign due to its secret nuclear weapons program.
16 thoughts on “Khamenei Advisor Says Iran Won’t Build Nuclear Weapon But Is Capable of Doing So”
Since nobody seems to have a problem with Israel’s policy of Nuclear Ambiguity, I assume there won’t be a problem if Iran does the same.
Cute logic, but the mindset of the two countries is quite different.
Actually the problem is that America is Israel’s bitch so it has to go after Iran.
I never thought about it in such terms but… If the leather collar fits….
America a fine bitch.
Presumably you reference Zionist aggression, territorial ambition, and racism vs. Iranian “live-and-let-live” self-reliance and cultural maturity.
Yes indeed. One has not attacked a foreign country in two centuries, the other has attacked many and plans more. One has not built nukes despite having the ability to for decades, the other has many. One has an imperfect democracy in which all residents vote, the other has a perfect democracy married to a racist apartheid system. The mindsets are quite different.
True. Israel routinely threatens use of nuclear weapons, and Iran does not nor even have any.
When has the Israeli regime “threatened the use of nuclear weapons?”
The Israeli regime doesn’t even admit it has nuclear weapons.
Good point. Israel can’t do one without doing the other. But then again they don’t have to threaten anybody in the ME to keep them scared of Israeli nukes.
Agreed. One is committing acts of terrorism. One is openly assassinating/murdering scientists. One does unprovoked weekly bombings in Syria. One murders a journalist and attacks the subsequent funeral. The other is Iran.
This is not ambiguous at all they don’t have nukes.
So Iran is like many other countries with native enrichment programs and no need/desire for weaponization. It’s an interesting place to be and we should encourage them to stay there by reducing regional threat levels, instead of threatening them every other day.
It seems to be what they are hoping for, but our record on reducing threats is poor.
At some point, they may get tired of being threatened and abused and decide to take steps. Of course, the MI Complex will love it, chaos is good for their business as we see in Ukraine. But normal Americans and Iranians will be poorer and more at risk.
He keeps adding new ones. He flatly refused to honor his own promises to reduce sanctions, even if he made such promises, retaining the option to re-impose them “for other reasons.” That makes him exactly the same as Trump.
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