Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
Iran Acknowledges Accusation It Enriched Uranium to 84%
gvw_ap_news
By Associated Press
Published 1 year ago on
February 23, 2023

Share

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Iran on Thursday directly acknowledged an accusation attributed to international inspectors that it enriched uranium to 84% purity for the first time, which would put the Islamic Republic closer than ever to weapons-grade material.

The acknowledgement by a news website linked to the highest reaches of Iran’s theocracy renews pressure on the West to address Tehran’s program, which had been contained by the 2015 nuclear deal that America unilaterally withdrew from in 2018. Years of attacks across the Middle East have followed.

Already Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who recently regained his country’s premiership, is threatening to take military action similar to when Israel previously bombed nuclear programs in Iraq and Syria. But while those attacks saw no war erupt, Iran has an arsenal of ballistic missiles, drones and other weaponry it and its allies already have used in the region.

The acknowledgment Thursday came from Iran’s Nour News, a website linked to Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, overseen by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Nour News separately is sanctioned by Canada for having “participated in gross and systematic human rights violations and perpetuated disinformation activities to justify the Iranian regime’s repression and persecution of its citizens” amid nationwide protests there.

The comments by Nour News follow days of muddled comments by Iran not directly acknowledging the accusation by inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency that Iran had enriched up to 84%.

Bloomberg first reported Sunday that inspectors had detected uranium particles enriched up to 84%. The IAEA, a United Nations agency based in Vienna, has not denied the report, saying only “that the IAEA is discussing with Iran the results of recent agency verification activities.”

In its comments Thursday, Nour News urged the IAEA to “not fall prey to the seduction of Western countries” and declare that Iran’s nuclear program was “completely peaceful.”

‘Deliberate Action’

“It will be clear soon that the IAEA surprising report of discovering 84% enriched uranium particles in Iran’s enrichment facilities was an inspector’s error or was a deliberate action to create political atmospheres against Iran on the eve of the meeting of” its board, Nour News said on Twitter. The board, a group of nations that oversees the IAEA, will meet beginning March 6 in Vienna.

The IAEA did not immediately respond to a request for comment Thursday over Nour News’ remarks.

It wasn’t immediately clear where the 84% enrichment allegedly took place, though the IAEA has said it found two cascades of advanced IR-6 centrifuges at Iran’s underground Fordo facility “interconnected in a way that was substantially different from the mode of operation declared by Iran to the agency in November last year.” Iran is known to have been enriching uranium at Fordo up to 60% purity — at level which nonproliferation experts already say has no civilian use for Tehran.

Iran also enriches uranium at its Natanz nuclear site.

Weapons-grade uranium is enriched up to 90%. While the IAEA’s director-general has warned Iran now has enough uranium to produce “several” nuclear bombs if it chooses, it likely would take months more to build a weapon and potentially miniaturize it to put on a missile.

The new tensions over Iran’s program also take place against the backdrop of a shadow war between Iran and Israel that has spilled out across the wider Middle East. Netanyahu, who long has advocated military action against Iran, mentioned it again in a talk this week.

“How do you stop a rogue nation from acquiring nuclear weapons?” Netanyahu rhetorically asked. “You had one that’s called Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. It was stopped by military force, ours. You had a second one that is called Syria that tried to develop nuclear weapons. And it was stopped by a military action, ours.”

He added: “A necessary condition, and an often sufficient condition, is credible military action. The longer you wait, the harder that becomes. We’ve waited very long.”

RELATED TOPICS:

DON'T MISS

Paul McCartney Becomes Britain’s First Billionaire Musician

DON'T MISS

California Cracked Down After a Crash Killed 13 Farmworkers. Why Are Workers Still Dying on the Road?

DON'T MISS

These Rare Chainsaws Are Worth Big Bucks to Collectors

DON'T MISS

Jewish Lobby Presses California Lawmakers to Combat Antisemitism

DON'T MISS

Opinion: How Urban Renewal Ruined Everything

DON'T MISS

California Wine Squeezed Dry: Insiders Say It’s Time to Pull up Acreage

DON'T MISS

Alabama Mercedes Employees Overwhelmingly Vote Against Joining Union, Slowing UAW Effort in South

DON'T MISS

Stock Market Today: Dow Finishes Above 40,000 to Cap Wall Street’s Latest Winning Week

DON'T MISS

Where Do State Lawmakers Stand on War in Gaza, Campus Protests?

DON'T MISS

High-Speed Rail Now Working to Extend Valley Line to 171 Miles

UP NEXT

Israel Denies Genocide Charges, Asserts Efforts to Protect Gaza Civilians

UP NEXT

Massive Ukrainian Drone Attack on Crimea Causes Power Cutoffs in Sevastopol

UP NEXT

Report: Child Migrant Arrivals in Italian City Double

UP NEXT

Palestinian Voices Echo Painful Gaza War History as Nakba is Remembered

UP NEXT

Rep. Matt Gaetz Echoes Proud Boys’ Language at Trump’s Court Appearance

UP NEXT

Ukraine Says It Has Checked Russia’s Offensive in a Key Town, But Moscow Says It Will Keep Pushing

UP NEXT

Slovak Authorities Charge ‘Lone Wolf’ in Assassination Attempt on Prime Minister

UP NEXT

US Military Says Gaza Pier Project is Complete and Aid Will Soon Flow as Israel-Hamas War Rages

UP NEXT

UN’s Top Court Opens Hearings on the Israeli Military’s Incursion into Rafah

UP NEXT

The US Is Wrapping up a Pier to Bring Aid to Gaza by Sea. But Danger and Uncertainty Lie Ahead

Jewish Lobby Presses California Lawmakers to Combat Antisemitism

2 days ago

Opinion: How Urban Renewal Ruined Everything

2 days ago

California Wine Squeezed Dry: Insiders Say It’s Time to Pull up Acreage

2 days ago

Alabama Mercedes Employees Overwhelmingly Vote Against Joining Union, Slowing UAW Effort in South

2 days ago

Stock Market Today: Dow Finishes Above 40,000 to Cap Wall Street’s Latest Winning Week

2 days ago

Where Do State Lawmakers Stand on War in Gaza, Campus Protests?

2 days ago

High-Speed Rail Now Working to Extend Valley Line to 171 Miles

2 days ago

Beautify Fresno Combines Dog Adoption, Litter Removal in Unique Saturday Event

2 days ago

Bulldogs’ Gilmore Named MW Softball Pitcher of the Year

2 days ago

The Latest | Dozens of Israeli Protesters Attack a Truck in an Apparent Effort to Block Gaza Aid

2 days ago

Paul McCartney Becomes Britain’s First Billionaire Musician

LONDON — Paul McCartney is a billionaire Beatle. According to figures released Friday, the former member of the Fab Four is the first Britis...

1 day ago

1 day ago

Paul McCartney Becomes Britain’s First Billionaire Musician

2 days ago

California Cracked Down After a Crash Killed 13 Farmworkers. Why Are Workers Still Dying on the Road?

2 days ago

These Rare Chainsaws Are Worth Big Bucks to Collectors

2 days ago

Jewish Lobby Presses California Lawmakers to Combat Antisemitism

2 days ago

Opinion: How Urban Renewal Ruined Everything

2 days ago

California Wine Squeezed Dry: Insiders Say It’s Time to Pull up Acreage

2 days ago

Alabama Mercedes Employees Overwhelmingly Vote Against Joining Union, Slowing UAW Effort in South

2 days ago

Stock Market Today: Dow Finishes Above 40,000 to Cap Wall Street’s Latest Winning Week

MENU

CONNECT WITH US

Search

Send this to a friend