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US, France, Germany, UK to Iran: De-escalate nuclear program

“There is a reason why most of Iran’s nuclear expansion has occurred since Biden’s election and his abandonment of pressure,” said Mark Dubowitz, CEO of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

The Vienna International Center (bottom left), home to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), viewed from the offices of the U.S. Mission to International Organizations in Vienna, Austria. Credit: Justen Thomas/U.S. Department of State.
The Vienna International Center (bottom left), home to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), viewed from the offices of the U.S. Mission to International Organizations in Vienna, Austria. Credit: Justen Thomas/U.S. Department of State.

The U.S., French, German and U.K. governments condemned Iran’s increased rate of uranium enriched up to 60% in a joint statement released on Thursday.

The four countries cited a Dec. 26 report from the International Atomic Energy Agency, which is part of the United Nations. “These findings represent a backwards step by Iran and will result in Iran tripling its monthly production rate of uranium enriched up to 60%,” they stated.

“We condemn this action, which adds to the unabated escalation of Iran’s nuclear program. The production of high-enriched uranium by Iran has no credible civilian justification,” they stated. “We urge Iran to immediately reverse these steps and de-escalate its nuclear program”

“We remain committed to a diplomatic solution and reaffirm our determination that Iran must never develop a nuclear weapon,” they added.

Mark Dubowitz, CEO of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, wrote that joint statements like this one “on Iran’s nuclear weapons program signal weakness and inaction.”

“There is a reason why most of Iran’s nuclear expansion has occurred since Biden’s election and his abandonment of pressure,” he added.

Richard Goldberg, a senior adviser at FDD and former director for countering Iranian weapons of mass destruction for the White House National Security Council, wrote that enrichment was being given the green light.

“No snapback of U.N. sanctions. No IAEA board resolutions or referrals to the Security Council. $10 billion waiver renewed. No oil sanctions enforcement,” he wrote. “These are empty words and Tehran knows it.”

The IAEA is currently hiring a “nuclear safeguards inspector,” based out of its Vienna, Austria office, who “will be assigned to one of the divisions of operations or the office for verification in Iran” and “will participate in the implementation of the IAEA’s safeguards activities.”

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