Rafael Grossi: Iran is progressing "quite rapidly" in 20% enrichment

January 12, 2021 - 12:16

TEHRAN – The director-general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has said Iran is moving very fast in enriching uranium to the purity of 20%.

During a “Reuters Next” meeting, the IAEA chief said, "Reviving Iran’s nuclear deal must happen within the coming weeks. It is clear that we don’t have many months ahead of us. We have weeks."

An Iranian lawmaker said on Jan. 9 that Iran is giving the incoming Biden administration, which takes office on Jan. 20, until Feb. 21 to reverse sanctions.

In early November the Iranian parliament passed a law that obliges the government to halt inspections of its nuclear sites by the IAEA and step up uranium enrichment if U.S. sanctions are not eased. The law is intended to lift illegal sanctions against Iran.

“I must take it seriously because it’s the law,” Grossi said, adding that he believed the Islamic Republic’s government intended to implement it.

Grossi said Iran was progressing "quite rapidly" in 20% enrichment and that based on estimations it would be able to reach about 10 kilograms a month at its facility in Fordow.

"There will have to be a clear understanding on how the initial terms and provisions of the JCPOA (nuclear deal) are going to be recompiled with," Grossi said.

The IAEA director-general also said, "I have not received any letters implying Iran's intention to cut the access of IAEA inspectors under the additional protocol in February".

Tehran started to reduce its commitments to the 2015 accord in 2019 in a step-by-step response to President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from it in 2018 and to the reimposition of U.S. sanctions that had been lifted under the deal. 

In May 2019 Iran unequivocally announced that if the remaining parties to the deal, especially the European trio, protect Iran from the illegal U.S. sanctions it will reverse its decisions. However, they failed to honor their commitments. 


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