UN: Questions Remain on Nuclear Research

February 19, 2015

On February 19, the U.N. nuclear watchdog reported that Iran has yet to provide explanations regarding possible military dimensions of its nuclear program. Tehran was due to address two practical measures by late August, which could help determine if it carried out explosive tests and other research related to nuclear weapons production. But Iran has not fully cooperated with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on these and other outstanding issues, so the agency “remains concerned” about possible undisclosed activities with military dimensions.

The report, however, also showed that Iran has continued to fulfill its commitments under the Joint Plan of Action, the interim nuclear deal that went into effect in January 2014. Iran has not enriched uranium above the five percent level, and it has downblended or converted its stock of 20 percent enriched uranium. Uranium would need to be enriched to more than 90 percent for use in a weapon. Tehran also has not installed any major components on the Arak heavy water reactor. The following are excerpts from the report.
Main Developments
• The Director General held talks with the Foreign Minister of Iran, HE Mohammad Javad Zarif on 7 February 2015. They agreed on the importance of continuing the dialogue between the Agency and Iran at all levels. The Director General also stressed the need to resolve, as soon as possible, all outstanding issues related to Iran’s nuclear programme.
• Iran has not provided any explanations that enable the Agency to clarify the two outstanding practical measures, nor has it proposed any new practical measures in the next step of the Framework for Cooperation.
• The Agency has continued to undertake monitoring and verification in relation to the
nuclear-related measures set out in the Joint Plan of Action (JPA), as further extended.
• Since the JPA took effect, Iran has not enriched UF6 above 5% U-235 at any of its declared facilities and all of its stock of UF6 enriched up to 20% U-235 has been further processed through downblending or conversion into uranium oxide.
• Enrichment of UF6 up to 5% U-235 has continued at a rate of production similar to that indicated in the Director General’s previous reports. The amount of such nuclear material that remains in the form of UF6 enriched up to 5% U-235 is 7952.9 kg.
• No additional major components have been installed at the IR-40 Reactor and there has been no manufacture and testing of fuel for the reactor.
• Iran has continued to provide the Agency with managed access to centrifuge assembly workshops, centrifuge rotor production workshops and storage facilities.
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