Iran now has greater than 10 instances the quantity of enriched uranium permitted underneath a world settlement, the UN’s nuclear watchdog says.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) mentioned Iran’s enriched uranium stockpile had reached 2,105kg (4,640lb) – nicely above the 300kg agreed in 2015.
Iran insists its nuclear programme is completely for peaceable functions.
It comes after Iran gave IAEA inspectors entry to one in every of two suspected former nuclear websites.
The company mentioned it will take samples on the second web site later this month.
Last yr, Iran started intentionally and publicly reneging on commitments it had made underneath the worldwide nuclear accord, signed in 2015 by Iran, China, France, Germany, Russia, the UK and the US.
This included the manufacturing of extra enriched uranium than it was allowed – though solely at enrichment ranges far under that required to be used in atomic weapons.
To manufacture a nuclear weapon, Iran would want to supply 1,050kg of three.67% enriched uranium, however would then must additional enrich that to 90% or extra, in keeping with US-based advocacy group the Arms Control Association.
Low-enriched uranium – which has a focus of between 3% and 5% of the fissile isotope U-235 – can be utilized to supply gas for energy vegetation. Weapons-grade uranium is 90% enriched or extra.
Experts say the enrichment course of might take a very long time, if Tehran selected to take action.
Last week, Iran mentioned it had agreed “in good religion” to let weapons inspectors entry websites to resolve excellent points associated to nuclear safeguards.
The IAEA had criticised Iran for not answering its questions on potential undeclared nuclear materials and nuclear-related actions on the two areas, and denying it entry.
In the most recent assertion, the worldwide watchdog mentioned Iran had “offered company inspectors entry to the placement to take environmental samples”.
“The samples shall be analysed by laboratories which might be a part of the company’s community,” it added.
Iran stopped abiding by a lot of commitments final yr in retaliation in opposition to US sanctions reinstated by President Donald Trump when he deserted the deal.