United States Institute of Peace

The Iran Primer

Timeline of Iran's Nuclear Activities

Semira N. Nikou
 
1957
The United States and Iran signed a civil nuclear cooperation agreement as part of the United States Atoms for Peace program. The agreement provided for U.S. technical assistance and the lease of enriched uranium to Iran. It also called for research cooperation on peaceful nuclear energy uses.
 
1967
November – The Tehran Nuclear Research Center, supplied by the United States, opened. It was equipped with a 5-megawatt nuclear research reactor called the Tehran Research Reactor (TRR), fueled by highly enriched uranium.
 
1968
July 1 – Iran signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). Parliament ratified it in February 1970. Uranium enrichment was allowed under the treaty.
 
1974
May 15 – Iran signed the NPT’s Safeguards Agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The safeguards allowed inspections for the purpose of verifying that nuclear enrichment for peaceful nuclear energy is not diverted to nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices.
 
November West German company Kraftwerk Union, a subsidiary of Siemens, agreed to construct two 1,200-megawatt light water reactors to produce nuclear energy at Bushehr. Construction began in August 1975, but the formal contract was not signed until mid-1976.
 
1975
The Ford administration expressed support in principle for the shah’s plan to develop a full-fledged nuclear power program to diversify Iran’s energy sources. The shah wanted the capacity to generate 23,000 megawatts of electricity with the ability to reprocess U.S.-supplied fuel.
 
1976
April 20 – President Gerald Ford issued National Security Decision Memorandum 324 supporting the shah’s ambitions and helping Iran formulate a plan to build 23 nuclear power reactors. But the administration refused to allow Iran to have the independent reprocessing capabilities sought by the shah. Ford’s memorandum instead approved a multinational reprocessing plant in Iran that would also enable the United States to participate in the project. Iran rejected the multinational option and pushed for a comprehensive national nuclear program.
 
1977
August - President Carter reopened negotiations on the shah’s quest for a nuclear energy program.
 
1978
January – Iran and the United States initialed a nuclear agreement in which Iran agreed to safeguards beyond NPT requirements. In return, the United States granted Iran "most favored nation" status for reprocessing so that Iran would not be discriminated against when seeking permission to reprocess U.S.-supplied fuel.
 
1979
After the 1979 revolution, the United States stopped supplying highly enriched uranium for the Tehran Research Reactor.
 
July 31 – Kraftwerk Union terminated work on the Bushehr reactor when Iran failed to make payments.
 
1984
February – German engineers returned to Iran to do a feasibility study to complete the Bushehr reactor.
 
March 24 – Iraq’s attack on the Bushehr nuclear power plant did serious damage.
 
December – Iran opened a nuclear research center at Isfahan with China’s assistance. In 1985, China supplied the center with a "training reactor."
 
1987
May 5 – After 18 months of negotiations, Argentina concluded a $5.5 million deal with Tehran to supply a new core for the Tehran Research Reactor so it would operate with only 20 percent enriched uranium, instead of the previous 90 percent. In 1989, Argentina replaced the core. In 1993, Argentina delivered around 50 pounds of 20 percent enriched uranium to fuel the reactor.
 
1990
Oct. 9 – Iran decided to rebuild the damaged Bushehr nuclear power plant.
 
1992
Aug. 25 – Russia and Iran signed a cooperation agreement on the civil use of nuclear energy, including construction of a nuclear power plant.
 
1995
January –Iran signed a contract with the Russian Ministry of Atomic Energy to build a light water reactor at Bushehr under IAEA safeguards. Russia was under a contractual obligation to complete the plant within 55 months. The project’s completion was delayed until August 2010.
 
1997
May – The IAEA expanded the Safeguards Agreement by adopting the Additional Protocol. Under the latter, inspectors would be allowed to conduct short notice inspections and be provided with multiple entry/exit visas. Iran signed the Additional Protocol in 2003, but had not ratified it as of 2010.
 
1998
Feb. 23 – The Clinton administration opposed Iran's nuclear energy program on grounds that Iran had sufficient oil and gas reserves for power and that work on the nuclear power reactor could indirectly contribute to a weapons program.
 
March 6 – Under U.S. pressure, Ukraine announced that it would not sell two turbines for use at the Bushehr reactor.
 
 
1999
May 7 Russia said Iran wanted to expand nuclear cooperation, potentially including the building of a second nuclear power plant.
 
May 19 – President Mohammad Khatami paid a five-day state visit to Saudi Arabia, where Iran and Saudi Arabia issued a joint statement expressing support for turning the Middle East into a zone free of weapons of mass destruction. They said Israel's production and stockpiling of nuclear weapons, along with its non-compliance with international laws and treaties, posed a serious threat to peace and security in the region.
 
2000
March 14 – President Clinton signed the Iran Nonproliferation Act, which allowed the United States to sanction individuals and organizations providing material aid to Iran’s nuclear, chemical, biological and ballistic missile weapons programs.
 
2001
March 12-15 – Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iranian President Khatami signed nuclear and military cooperation accords. Khatami said Iran wanted a second nuclear power plant after the completion of Bushehr.
 
2002
Jan. 8 – Former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani said, "Iran is not seeking to arm itself with non-conventional weapons."
 
Aug. 15 – The National Council of Resistance of Iran, an exiled opposition group, revealed that Iran was building two secret nuclear sites – a uranium enrichment plant and research lab at Natanz and a heavy water production plant in Arak. President Khatami acknowledged the existence of Natanz and other facilities on Iran's state-run television and invited the International Atomic Energy Agency to visit them.
 
Sept. 1 – Russian technicians began to assemble heavy equipment in the Bushehr reactor, despite U.S. attempts to convince the Russians not to participate. But the plant faced frequent delays in construction.
 
2003
Feb. 9President Khatami said Iran had discovered and extracted uranium in the Savand area. He cited Iran’s “legitimate right to obtain nuclear energy for peaceful aims” and expressed readiness to accept international inspections of its nuclear activities. 
 
May 6 – Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization presented the United Nations with a sketch of Iran's nuclear program, insisting that the program was peaceful.
 
May 17 – Tehran backed a proposal by Syria to rid the Middle East of weapons of mass destruction.
 
June 19 – An IAEA report did not find Iran in violation of the NPT but said Iran should have been more forthcoming about the Natanz uranium enrichment facility and the Arak heavy water production plant. The U.N. watchdog agency later urged Iran to sign and ratify the Additional Protocol to the Safeguards Agreement of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which would allow inspectors more access to nuclear sites and the right to sudden inspections.
 
Aug. 26 – IAEA inspectors found traces of highly enriched uranium at Iran's Natanz nuclear plant. Iran claimed the traces came from equipment imported from another country.
 
Sept. 19 – President Khatami said, "We don't need atomic bombs, and based on our religious teaching, we will not pursue them...but at the same time, we want to be strong, and being strong means having knowledge and technology."
 
Sept. 25 – U.N. weapons inspectors found traces of highly enriched weapons-grade uranium at a second site near the capital city of Tehran. The IAEA set a deadline of Oct. 31 for Iran to prove it was not making nuclear weapons. 
 
Oct. 21 – In talks with Britain, France and Germany (EU-3), Iran agreed to suspend uranium enrichment and processing activities and to open nuclear sites to unannounced inspections by the U.N. watchdog agency. It also agreed to sign the Additional Protocols of the Non-Proliferation Treaty and its safeguards agreement with the IAEA. 
 
Oct. 24 – 1,500 Iranian protestors gathered in Tehran to denounce the recently concluded agreement between Tehran and the EU-3.
 
Nov. 12 – The IAEA concluded there was no evidence of a secret nuclear weapons program in Iran but showed concern about its production of plutonium. President Khatami said that the plutonium was used for manufacturing pharmaceuticals and the small amount produced by Iran could not make a nuclear bomb. 

Dec. 18 – Tehran signed the Additional Protocol to the Non-Proliferation Treaty’s Safeguards Agreement. The Additional Protocol granted IAEA inspectors greater authority in their nuclear verification programs. Since then, Iran has at times voluntarily allowed more intrusive inspections, but the Iranian parliament has not yet ratified the Additional Protocol.
 
2004
Feb. 22 Iran acknowledged having secretly bought nuclear parts from international sources, although Tehran continued to insist that its goal was electricity production and not nuclear weapons.
 
Apr. 7 – Iran declared its plans to construct a heavy water reactor to produce radioisotopes for medical research. Western envoys warned that the facility could reprocess the spent fuel rods to produce plutonium.
 
Aug. 28 – President Khatami said Iran had a right to enrich uranium and was willing to provide guarantees to the IAEA that it was not developing nuclear weapons.
 
Oct. 6 – Tehran announced that it had produced tons of the hexafluoride gas needed to enrich uranium by converting a few tons of yellowcake uranium.
 
Nov. 14 – In negotiations with Britain, France and Germany, Iran accepted the Paris accord, which recognized Tehran's rights to pursue nuclear technology for peaceful purposes and reaffirmed Iran's commitment not to acquire nuclear weapons. In exchange, Iran voluntarily agreed to temporarily suspend uranium enrichment activities and allow the IAEA to monitor the suspension.
 
Nov. 15 – The IAEA reported that it had not found any evidence that Iran had tried to develop nuclear weapons, although it could not rule out the existence of nuclear materials that had not been declared.
 
Nov. 22 – Iran invited the IAEA to monitor the suspension of all enrichment-related activities.
 
Nov. 30 – Iran said that it had not abandoned its right to enrich uranium and that the suspension was only temporary. European officials hoped to make the suspension permanent in return for trade deals and other incentives.
 
Dec. 22 – Iran’s intelligence minister announced the arrest of more than 10 people on spying charges. Tehran charged the spies were passing sensitive information on Iran’s nuclear program to the Israeli Mossad and the CIA.
 
2005
Jan. 13 – IAEA inspectors were only allowed partial access to the Parchin military base near Tehran. Under the NPT, Iran was not required to allow inspectors into its military bases. But the Bush administration consistently expressed concern that Iran’s failure to allow full access to its suspected military bases and facilities was linked to a secret nuclear weapons program.
 
Jan. 17 – President Bush said military action against Iran remained an option, "if it continues to stonewall the international community about the existence of its nuclear weapons program." 
 
Feb. 7 - Iran's Minister of Defense Ali Shamkhani said in an interview that it was not in Iran's national interest to acquire nuclear weapons.
 
Feb. 28 – Tehran and Moscow signed an agreement that stipulated that Russia would supply nuclear fuel for the Bushehr facility and that Iran would return all spent fuel rods to Russia to ensure the fuel was not diverted for other use.
 
May 15Iran’s parliament approved a non-binding resolution urging the government to resume uranium enrichment for peaceful use.
 
Aug. 1 – Iran informed the IAEA that it had decided to resume activities at the Isfahan uranium conversion center. The U.N. nuclear watchdog agency urged Iran not to take any action that would prejudice negotiations with Britain, France and Germany (the EU-3) or undermine the IAEA inspection process.
 
Aug. 5 – Britain, France and Germany (the EU-3) proposed the “Framework for a Long-term Agreement” to Iran. The deal offered assistance in developing peaceful nuclear energy in exchange for a binding commitment that Iran would not to pursue fuel cycle activities other than for light water power and research reactors. It also called for a halt on construction of a heavy water research reactor at Arak. Iran rejected the proposal, as it required Tehran to abandon all nuclear fuel work.
 
Aug. 8 – Iran resumed uranium conversion at the Isfahan facility under surveillance of the IAEA.
 
Aug. 9 – Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei issued a fatwa forbidding the “production, stockpiling and use of nuclear weapons.”

Aug. 11 –The IAEA urged Iran to suspend all enrichment activities and re-instate IAEA seals.
 
Sept. 24The IAEA found Iran in noncompliance with the NPT Safeguards Agreement and decided to refer Tehran to the U.N. Security Council for further action. The decision followed Iran’s repeated failure to fully report its nuclear activities. Tehran countered that it might suspend its voluntary implementation of the Additional Protocol that allowed more intrusive and sudden inspections.
 
Nov. 20 –Iran’s parliament approved a bill requiring the government to stop voluntary implementation of the Safeguards Agreement’s separate Additional Protocol, which allowed more intrusive and surprise inspections, if Iran were referred to the Security Council. The parliament did not move to block normal inspections required under the Safeguards Agreement, which had been ratified by parliament in 1974.
 
2006
JanuaryIran broke open internationally monitored seals on the Natanz enrichment facility and at two related storage and testing locations, which cleared the way to resume nuclear fuel research under IAEA supervision. 
 
Feb. 4The IAEA voted to report Iran to the U.N. Security Council for its non-compliance with its NPT Safeguards Agreement obligations.
 
July 31The U.N. Security Council passed Resolution 1696 demanding that Iran suspend its uranium enrichment activities within one month. No sanctions were imposed but the resolution warned that "appropriate measures" would be taken in the case of Iranian non-compliance. Tehran called the resolution illegal.
 
Aug. 26 – Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad inaugurated a heavy water production plant at Arak. The United States expressed concern that the heavy water would be used in the heavy water reactor at Arak to produce plutonium, an ingredient in making nuclear weapons.
 
Oct. 2 President Bush signed into law the Iran Freedom Support Act, which imposed economic sanctions on nations and companies that aided Iran's nuclear program.
 
Dec. 23 – The U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution 1737, sanctioning Iran for its failure to comply with Resolution 1696 and halt uranium enrichment. The resolution banned the sale of nuclear-related technology to Iran and froze the assets of key individuals and companies related to the nuclear program.
 
2007
March 24 – The U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution 1747, which banned the sale of arms to Iran increased the freeze on assets.
 
Dec. 4 – A U.S.National Intelligence Estimate on Iran's nuclear activities said there was evidence that Tehran halted its nuclear weapons program in 2003. It assessed with “moderate confidence” that Iran had not re-started its nuclear weapons program as of mid-2007. The findings contradicted the 2005 U.S. intelligence assessment that Tehran was seeking nuclear weapons capability.
 
2008
Feb. 22 – An IAEA report concluded that Iran had not fully answered the international community's questions about its nuclear program and testing of new centrifuge technology for faster uranium enrichment. The report was based in part on intelligence acquired by the Bush administration that allegedly pointed to Iranian efforts to weaponize nuclear materials. The data was extracted from a laptop reportedly smuggled out of Iran in 2004.
 
March 3 The U.N. Security Council approved Resolution 1803, imposing further economic sanctions on Iran.
 
July 18 – The Bush administration agreed to send U.S. Undersecretary of State William Burns to Geneva to participate with his European counterparts in talks with Iran about its nuclear program. But Iran again rejected the suspension or freeze of its enrichment activities. 
 
Sept. 26The U.N. Security Council passed Resolution 1835 which reaffirmed three earlier rounds of sanctions against Iran. No new sanctions were imposed, largely because of objections by Russia and China.
 
2009
Sept. 25 – President Obama, French President Sarkozy and British Prime Minister Brown told a press conference that Iran had a covert fuel enrichment plant near Qom. Iran said it had already confirmed the construction of a new pilot enrichment plant to the IAEA in a letter four days earlier. Critics said Tehran disclosed the site once it discovered the facility was already under surveillance.
 
Oct. 1 – Iran met in Geneva with permanent members of the U.N. Security Council and Germany to discuss Iran's nuclear program. The parties outlined a proposal for Iran to ship 80 percent of its stockpile of low-enriched uranium from Natanz to Russia. The shipment would then go to France for further enrichment and fabrication of fuel rods for the Tehran Research Reactor, which produced isotopes for medical use.
 
Oct. 19-21The early October talks in Geneva were continued in Vienna with the presence of the IAEA, on the transfer of Iran’s low-enriched uranium. A consensus was reached on a draft agreement. The United States, France and Russia approved the agreement, but Iran backed down due to domestic opposition.
 
2010
Feb. 12 – President Ahmadinejad announced that Iran had produced 20 percent enriched uranium, up from 3.5 percent, in a move that marked a major increase in its capabilities. He said Iran had the capability to enrich the fuel even further.
 
May 17 – Turkey, Brazil and Iran agreed to a nuclear deal similar to the agreement outlined in Geneva in 2009. The proposal called for the transfer of 1,200 kg of low-enriched uranium (3.5 percent) to Turkey, in exchange for 120 kg of 20 percent enriched uranium needed to run the Tehran Research Reactor. The United States and Europeans rejected the deal because Iran had increased its uranium stockpile. The 1,200 kg then represented only about half of Iran’s stockpile, rather than the 80 percent it had in the October 2009 deal. Washington also believed the move was a delaying tactic to avert sanctions.
 
June 9 – The U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution 1929, imposing a fourth round of sanctions on Iran. They included tighter financial measures and an expanded arms embargo. President Ahmadinejad said the sanctions were a "used handkerchief that should be thrown in the dustbin," and that they were "not capable of harming Iranians."
 
June – The Stuxnet computer virus was reportedly detected in staff computers at the Bushehr nuclear plant.
 
June 24 – Congress approved the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010. It passed unanimously in the Senate and overwhelmingly in the House. The bill expanded existing U.S. sanctions on Iran. It imposed extensive sanctions on foreign companies that export refined petroleum to Iran or invest in Iran’s energy sector. The legislation went well beyond U.N. Resolution 1929. 
 
July 6 – Iran announced that talks with U.N. Security Council and Germany could begin in September.
 
July 11 – Iran announced it had produced 20 kilograms of 20 percent enriched uranium and had begun work on fuel plates. The fuel was to be delivered to the Tehran Research Reactor by September 2011, for creating medical isotopes. Western powers have repeatedly expressed fear that Iran’s capability to enrich 20 percent would help it produce nuclear weapon material, which is around 90 percent.
 
July 26 – The European Union passed sanctions, which banned technical assistance to Iran’s oil and gas industry.
 
Aug. 13 – The Russian Federal Atomic Energy Agency (Rosatom) announced that the first reactor at the Bushehr would soon be loaded with nuclear fuel and become Iran’s first operational nuclear power plant.
 
Aug. 21 – An official launch ceremony was held to mark completion of the Bushehr reactor, after years of delays. Iran began loading the plant with fuel, in hopes of making it fully operational within a few months. As part of the deal, Russia supplied the reactor with fuel and Iran is required to send back the spent fuel to Russia.
 
Nov. 23 – An IAEA report showed that Iran stopped uranium enrichment for one day on Nov. 16, 2010 with no reasoning provided. This report came amid speculation that Iran’s nuclear program had suffered technical problems.
 
December - Iran began producing its own yellowcake, which is necessary for the production of nuclear reactor fuel. Sale of yellowcake to Iran is banned under U.N. sanctions.
 
Dec.6-7 – Iran met in Geneva with members of the U.N. Security Council and Germany for negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program. The group agreed to meet again in January 2011 in Istanbul.
 
2011
Jan. 8 - Nuclear chief Ali Akbar Salehi claimed that Iran had the necessary technology to make fuel plates and rods for its nuclear reactors.
 
Jan. 21-22 – P5+1 talks in Istanbul failed after Tehran refused to discuss transparent limits on its uranium enrichment program.
 
Feb. 25 – An IAEA report found new information suggesting that Iran may have worked on nuclear weapons research. It also noted that Iran appeared to have overcome setbacks from the Stuxnet virus.
 
May 10 – Iran’s Bushehr nuclear power plant began operating at a low level, according to the Russian company that built it, Atomstroyexport.
 
May 23-24 – The E.U. imposed sanctions on more than 100 individuals and companies tied to Iran's nuclear program while the United States sanctioned seven foreign companies involved in supplying Iran with refined oil. It also blacklisted sixteen firms and individuals involved in the missile and nuclear programs.
 
May 24 – An IAEA report found that Iran had significantly increased its low-enriched uranium production and slightly increased its number of centrifuges.
 
Sept. 2 – An IAEA report found that Iran had not suspended its uranium enrichment related activities and was not cooperating enough with the IAEA.
 
Sept. 4 - Iran announced that Bushehr nuclear power plant had been connected to the national power grid.
 
Nov. 8 - An IAEA report claimed that Iran had continued nuclear weaponization work since 2003 and that Iran had a secret project to enrich uranium. It also indicated that there were 8,000 centrifuges installed at Natanz, 6,200 of which were operating. Tehran claimed that the U.S. had fabricated the evidence.
 
Nov. 18 – The IAEA Board of Governors adopted a new resolution on the implementation of safeguards and relevant provisions of the U.N. Security Council resolutions in Iran. The resolution expressed “deep and increasing concern about the unresolved issues regarding the Iranian nuclear program, including those which need to be clarified to exclude the existence of possible military dimensions.”
 
2012
Jan. 1 – Iran’s nuclear agency reported that Iranian scientists have produced their first nuclear fuel rod.
 
Jan. 9 – The IAEA confirmed that Iran has begun enriching uranium at its underground plant at Fordow to 20 percent.
 
Jan. 23 - The European Union imposed an oil embargo on Iran, effective July 1, 2012. The European Union made up 20 percent of Iran’s oil sales.
 
Feb. 15 – In a live television broadcast, President Ahmadinejad unveiled Iran’s first domestically produced batch of 20-percent enriched nuclear uranium for Tehran's research reactor. Iran also activated a new generation of centrifuges that reportedly increased its enrichment capacity threefold.
 
Feb. 21 - IAEA inspectors left Iran after being denied access to the Parchin military base.
 
Feb. 24 – An IAEA report found that Iran has significantly stepped up its uranium enrichment program. The IAEA expressed “serious concerns” about potential military uses.
 
March 6 – The P5+1 agreed to resume talks with Iran over its nuclear program.
 
April 14 – The P5+1 met in Istanbul to discuss Tehran's promised “new initiatives” on its nuclear program.
 
May 23-24 – The P5+1 held inconclusive talks with Iran in Baghdad.
 
May 25 – An IAEA report stated that inspectors found traces of uranium enriched to 27 percent at Fordow. It concluded that Iran is “unable to provide credible assurance about the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran, and therefore to conclude that all nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities.”
 
May 28 – Iran acknowledged that the Flame computer virus had infiltrated its computer system.
 
June 18-19 – The P5+1 held inconclusive talks with Iran in Moscow.
 
July 12 – The United States announced broad new sanctions on Iranian front companies and banks linked to the proliferation of nuclear and missiles programs. 
 
Aug. 30 – An IAEA report found that Iran had doubled its production capacity at Fordow. It warned that Iran had “sanitized” a suspect site at the Parchin military complex in ways that “significantly hampered” the agency’s investigation into  past activities.
 
Oct. 15 – The European Union targeted Iran’s nuclear program with new sanctions on its financial, energy, trade, and transport sectors. 
 
Nov. 5 – IAEA chief Yukiya Amano announced that his agency “cannot conclude that all nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities.” Talks between Tehran and the IAEA since November 2011 had not delivered “concrete results,” he said in an annual report to U.N. General Assembly.
 
Nov. 16 – An IAEA report found that Iran was continuing to enrich uranium, upgrade its facilities and build a heavy water reactor. Since the last quarterly report, Tehran has added 43 kilograms of 20 percent-enriched uranium to its stockpile.
 
Dec. 13 – The U.S. Treasury and State Department imposed sanctions on seven Iranian companies and five individuals for “proliferating weapons of mass destruction” pursuant to Executive Order 13382.
 
Dec. 21 – The U.S. Treasury Department froze the assets of four Iranian companies and one executive for links to Tehran’s missile and nuclear programs.
 
2013
January 16-17 –The IAEA held talks with Tehran over allegations that tests had been carried out for atomic weapons triggers, but failed to produce an agreement.
 
Feb. 2 – Vice President Joe Biden said that the United States is prepared to hold direct talks with Iran to resolve tensions over its controversial nuclear program.
 
Feb. 13 – IAEA experts met in Tehran but failed to finalize an agreement that would allow inspectors to investigate nuclear and military facilities.
 
Feb. 6 - The U.S. Treasury Department imposed new sanctions on the Central Bank of Iran and other financial institutions to restrict Tehran’s ability to spend oil revenues. It also designated one individual and four entities for involvement in censorship activities.
 
Feb. 7 – Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei rejected the offer by Vice President Biden for direct talks. “Some naïve people like the idea of negotiating with America. However, negotiations will not solve the problem,” he said in a speech to Iranian Air Force commanders.
 
Feb. 11 – The U.S. Treasury Department imposed new nonproliferation sanctions on entities and individuals from Belarus, China, Iran, Sudan, Syria, and Venezuela. Credible information indicated that they had transferred to, or acquired from, Iran, North Korea, or Syria, equipment and technology related to weapons programs.
 
Feb. 26-27 – Diplomats from P5+1 countries met with their Iranian counterparts in Almaty, Kazakhstan and agreed to have two more meetings later that spring.
 
March 14 - The U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned a Greek businessman and 14 companies for helping Iran evade international oil sanctions.
 
April – Iran reported that it had begun mining uranium at two locations and started operations at an ore-processing plant.
 
March 18 – President Obama sent a fifth Nowruz message to Iran saying there could be a “new relationship” with Iran if it meets international obligations on its controversial nuclear program.
 
March 21 – Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said he is not opposed to direct talks with the United States in a speech marking Nowruz. But he is “not optimistic” about prospects for success if negotiations take place. He also claimed that the United States “doesn’t want the nuclear conflict to end.”
 
<!--[if gte mso 9]> <![endif]-->April 5-6 – Diplomats from P5+1 countries met with their Iranian counterparts in Almaty, Kazakhstan but the talks end without an accord or plans for another meeting. Tehran introduced a proposal requiring world powers to recognize its right to enrich uranium.
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May 22 – The IAEA reported that Iran had continued installation of advanced IR-2m centrifuges that could significantly upgrade its enrichment capabilities.
 
June 3 – The United States imposed sanctions for the first time on Iran’s currency, the rial. The executive order’s objective was to render the currency unusable outside of Iran, a senior administration official said during a conference call.
 
June 4 – The United States sanctioned a major network of front companies for hiding assets on behalf of Iranian leaders.
 
June 18 – The Group of Eight industrialized nations called on Iran to move “without delay” to fulfill its long-delayed obligations in answering questions about its controversial nuclear program. It also called on the international community to fully implement a several U.N. sanctions resolutions designed to pressure Tehran into compliance. 
 
July 1 – New U.S. sanctions banning gold sales and trade in gold with Iran went into effect.
 
Aug. 28 – The IAEA reported that Iran had made slow but steady progress on its nuclear program since May. Iran continued to install centrifuges but only added a small amount of 20-percent low enriched uranium to its stockpile, which was not sufficient for one bomb’s worth of fuel.
 
Oct. 28-29 – The IAEA held talks with Iran on outstanding issues regarding its nuclear program. Iran “presented a proposal on practical measures as a constructive contribution” to ongoing talks,” according to a joint statement. The sides agreed to meet again November.
 
Sept. 26 – Foreign ministers from P5+1 countries and Iran met on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly and agreed to hold a new round of talks in Geneva.
 
Sept. 27 – President Barack Obama called Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in what was the first direct communication between a U.S. and Iranian presidents since the 1979 revolution. “The two of us discussed our ongoing efforts to reach an agreement over Iran’s nuclear program,” Obama said at a White House briefing.
 
Oct. 15-16 – Diplomats from P5+1 countries and Iran met in Geneva to solve the nuclear dispute. They committed to meeting in November to continue talks that were “substantive and forward looking.”
 
Nov. 7-10 – Iran and the P5+1 made significant headway but ultimately failed to finalize an agreement. Foreign ministers rushed to Geneva as a breakthrough appeared imminent. But last-minute differences, reportedly spurred by French demands for tougher terms, blocked a deal.
Nov. 11 – IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano visited Tehran. He and Iran’s chief of the Atomic Energy Organization, Ali Akbar Salehi, signed a Framework for Cooperation Agreement committing Tehran to take practical steps towards transparency within three months.
 

Nov. 24 – Iran and the P5+1 reached an interim agreement that would significantly constrain Tehran’s nuclear program for six months in exchange for modest sanctions relief. Iran pledged to neutralize its stockpile of near-20 percent enriched uranium, halt enrichment above five percent and stop installing centrifuges. Tehran also committed to halt construction of the Arak heavy water reactor.

Dec. 9 -12 –The P5+1 and Iran met in Geneva at the technical level to discuss implementation of the interim nuclear deal.
 
Dec. 11 – Iran and the IAEA met in Vienna to review the status of the six actions Iran committed to in November as part of the Framework for Cooperation Agreement.  
 
Dec. 19 – Nuclear and sanctions experts from Iran and the P5+1 met in Vienna to discuss technical details related to implementing the interim nuclear agreement. The Iranian team unexpectedly flew back to Tehran, reportedly in response to Washington’s blacklisting of 19 entities for violating sanctions.
 
Dec. 30-31 – The P5+1 and Iran met again in Geneva for technical talks on implementing the November Joint Plan of Action.
 
2014
Jan. 9-12 – The P5+1 and Iran met in Geneva and reach an agreement on implementation. The delegations returned to their capitals for approval. On January 12, the parties announced that the Joint Plan of Action will be implemented starting on January 20.
 
Jan. 20 – The Joint Plan of Action entered into force. The IAEA also issued a report stating that Iran is complying with the deal after reducing their 20% enrichment stockpile and halting work on the Arak heavy water reactor. The United States and European Union announced they have taken steps to waive certain sanctions and release a schedule for releasing Iran’s oil money frozen in other countries.
 
Feb. 6 – The U.S. Treasury announced new measures against more than a dozen companies and individuals deemed to be “evading U.S. sanctions against Iran, aiding Iranian nuclear and missile proliferation, and supporting terrorism.”
 
Feb. 7 – The U.S. Treasury issued a general license allowing Iranians to purchase computers, cell phones, software, mobile applications and Internet services. “We are committed to promoting the free exchange of information in Iran and to enabling individuals in Iran to communicate with each other and with the outside world,” said a Treasury spokeswoman in an email, according to The Wall Street Journal.
 
Feb.18-20 – The P5+1 and Iran agreed on a framework for final negotiations on February 20 after three days of discussion in Geneva.  
 
March 3 – IAEA chief Yukiya Amano announced that Iran has implemented the six measures contained in the Framework for Cooperation Agreement but also notes that “much remains to be done to resolve all outstanding issues.”
 
March 19 – The P5+1 and Iran held another round of closed-door talks on a final nuclear agreement. Ashton and Zarif described their discussions on the Arak heavy water reactor and Western sanctions as “substantive and useful.”
 
March 20 – The IAEA released a report detailing Iran’s implementation of the interim nuclear deal brokered in November 2013. The report noted that Tehran has not enriched any more uranium to 20 percent. But it had not yet completed a facility to convert low-enriched uranium gas into an oxide, which would need to be reprocessed to fuel a weapon.
 
April 7-9 – The P5+1 and Iran met in Vienna to continue negotiations on a final nuclear agreement. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and E.U. foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton reported that they had “substantive and detailed discussions” on all relevant issues.
 
April 17 – The U.S. State Department announced that Washington had taken steps to release $450 million installment of frozen Iranian funds after the IAEA verified Iran is complying with the interim nuclear agreement.

 

May 13-16 – The P5+1 and Iran met in Vienna to begin drafting a final agreement. The talks ended without any tangible progress. But both sides committed to another round of talks in June.

 

May 21 – Iran and the IAEA agreed to an additional five actions for Tehran to take before August 25. Two of the actions involved Iran providing information on possible military dimensions of its nuclear program. 

 

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