Ali Shamkhani, undated

Iran's Nuclear Point Man : We Won't Bow to Pressure

Friday, 06/14/2024

Ali Shamkhani, advisor to the Supreme Leader and apparent nuclear negotiator, stated on Friday that Iran "won't bow to pressure" amidst US warnings regarding its uranium enrichment activities.

“Iran's nuclear program relies on national will and development strategy,” Shamkhani wrote on X. “The US and some Western countries would dismantle Iran’s nuclear industry if they could.”

The US issued a warning to Iran, stating they will “respond accordingly” if Iran continues to accelerate its nuclear program. This came shortly after the UN nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), highlighted Tehran's expanding uranium enrichment.

The IAEA’s report revealed Iran's response to a censure resolution, indicating expanded uranium enrichment at two underground sites. Iran rapidly installed more uranium-enriching centrifuges at its Fordow site and began work on additional ones at its Natanz facility, the report said.

A week ago, The IAEA's Board passed a resolution urging Iran to cooperate and reverse its decision to bar inspector visits, with the US stressing the need for Iran's compliance. Britain, France, and Germany tabled the resolution, which the US reportedly opposed but later endorsed. Only Russia and China voted against the measure.

Shamkhani, an old-guard military figure who served as the secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council until last year, had previously warned of a "serious and effective response" if European nations pursued the resolution.

According to an IAEA assessment, Iran is enriching uranium to 60% purity, approaching the 90% threshold typical of weapons-grade material. Additionally, it has accumulated enough material for additional enrichment, potentially resulting in three nuclear warheads.

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