Iran is only a few weeks away from having a “significant quantity of enriched uranium,” the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) director general Rafael Grossi said yesterday.
“Having a significant quantity does not mean having a bomb,” Grossi told a Press conference following the start of the quarterly Board of Governors meeting in the Austrian capital Vienna.
The warning comes as the prospects for a return to the Iranian nuclear deal continue to dim, even as the Biden administration is hoping for an agreement to salvage the 2015 deal, CNN reports.
The IAEA defines “significant quantity” of enriched uranium as “the approximate amount of nuclear material for which the possibility of manufacturing a nuclear explosive device cannot be excluded”.
At this week’s board of governors meeting, the US is preparing to join three European allies – the UK, France and Germany – for a resolution that would censure Iran for failing to fully co-operate with the IAEA.
Iran has increased its enriched uranium stockpile and hasn’t provided answers for unexplained nuclear activities at three undeclared sites, according to two IAEA reports last month that were obtained by CNN.
Grossi expressed his concern over three undeclared sites related to Iran’s nuclear programme, saying “it is in no one’s interest that co-operation between the agency and Iran diminishes further”.
“We have to sit down urgently if possible to see how we continue with this,” he said. “Iran has not provided explanations that are technically credible in relation to the agency’s findings at three undeclared locations in Iran.”
Grossi said yesterday that the IAEA was ready to re-engage Iran to “resolve these matters.”