IAEA Director General voices concern as Iran’s enriched uranium stockpile continues to increase News
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IAEA Director General voices concern as Iran’s enriched uranium stockpile continues to increase

International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Mariano Grossi raised concerns over the safety of Iran’s nuclear programme while addressing the agency’s Board of Directors on Monday. Grossi said the stockpile of Iran’s enriched uranium continues to grow while it has been three years since the agency last had access in Iran.

The IAEA is facing difficulties in both monitoring and gaining credible information about Iran’s nuclear programme. Grossi highlighted that the agency has lost “continuity of knowledge” and further stated that Iran has not provided adequate explanations for the presence of uranium reported at the undeclared sites of Varamin and Turquzabad. The director general said that these outstanding safety concerns, including Iran’s withdrawal of agency inspectors, means the IAEA is currently “not in a position to provide assurance that Iran’s nuclear programme is exclusively peaceful.”

In 2015, Iran entered into a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, otherwise known as the “Iran Nuclear Deal,” with China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States to ensure that Iran’s nuclear programme will be exclusively peaceful. The US has since withdrawn from the deal and subsequently released a joint statement with the Governments of France, Germany and the United Kingdom, stating that “Iran must fully cooperate with the IAEA to enable it to provide assurances that its nuclear program is exclusively peaceful, and to re-designate the inspectors suspended in September 2023.”

Mariano Grossi travelled to Tehran in early May for meetings with Iran officials which were referred to in his address. The result of previous discussions was a joint statement between Iran and the IAEA agreeing to further cooperation. Grossi stated that he welcomes Iran’s agreement that the Joint Statement continues to provide a framework for cooperation but deeply regrets that Iran has yet to reverse its decision to withdraw agency inspectors.