Iran accumulates enough enriched uranium to make 3 bombs, Israeli official

IAEA board of governors to vote on decision calling Iran to live up to its commitments but official hopes vote will be followed by UN security Council imposing sanctions on Tehran

Itamar Eichner|
An Israeli official said late on Monday that Iran has already accumulated enriched uranium in sufficient quantity to make three nuclear bombs.
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  • The International Atomic Energy Agency said in its latest report on Iran's nuclear program published last week, that it "estimated that, as of May 15, 2022, Iran's total enriched stockpile was 3,809.3 kilograms."
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    צנטריפוגה צנטריפוגות מתקדמות מסוג IR-8   ב מתקן העשרת ה אורניום ב נתנז איראן
    צנטריפוגה צנטריפוגות מתקדמות מסוג IR-8   ב מתקן העשרת ה אורניום ב נתנז איראן
    Advanced Iranian uranium enrichment centrifuges
    (Photo: EPA)
    The UN watchdog also reiterated that it still had questions that were "not clarified" regarding previous undeclared nuclear material at three sites named Marivan, Varamin and Turquzabad.
    "The IAEA board of governors will vote on a decision to call on Iran to live up to its commitments but will not criticize the Iranian regime," the official said.
    If the vote will pass, Iran will face political pressure for the first time since negotiations between world powers and the Islamic Republic, on a return to the 2015 nuclear deal, began.
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    שיחות גרעין משא ומתן וינה הסכם הגרעין איראן מעצמות חודשו
    שיחות גרעין משא ומתן וינה הסכם הגרעין איראן מעצמות חודשו
    World powers negotiate a return to the 2015 nuclear deal with Iranian delegation in Vienna
    "Judging by public statements, it seems Iran is beginning to feel pressured by the pending IAEA decision," the official said.
    He expressed his hope that following the IAEA vote, the UN security council will then consider sanctions on Iran, if not immediately – "then in the long run," the official said.
    The outline proposed by the IAEA to close the case against Iran for violating the JCPOA has failed, the official said.
    "Iran has not been able to answer the UN watch dog's questions," he said adding that there were insufficient explanations given by Tehran and the Iranian government was "caught in lies while attempting to explain its actions."
    The officials also said that there is concern over large amounts of enriched uranium of up to 60%, which could produce three atomic bombs.
    In a background briefing, the official said U.S. President Joe Biden gave a clear commitment to Prime Minister Naftali Bennett that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps will not be taken of the list of terror affiliated organizations by the administration.
    "We and the Americans are heading towards a coordinated policy," he said.
    "As part of the shift in the U.S. policy on Iran, decisions were made in the past week, regarding oil smuggling and the IRGC, meant to finance terrorism by Iran and its proxies. We believe this is just one step that will be followed by others," the official said.
    IAEA chief Rafael Grossi met with Bennett in Jerusalem over the weekend.
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    נפתלי בנט ורפאל גרוסי
    נפתלי בנט ורפאל גרוסי
    Rafael Grossi and Naftali Bennett
    (Photo: GPO)
    In their meeting, Bennett emphasized the danger of continuing Iranian advancement toward a nuclear weapon, while misleading the international community by using false information and lies. He also emphasized the "urgent need for the international community to move against Iran by any means to prevent it from achieving weapon capabilities."
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