NIGHTWATCH: IAEA Passes Iran Nuclear

05 Iran, 08 Proliferation

Iran: For the record. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said in a report passed to member states that Iran “has ceased enriching uranium above five percent” fissile purity at the Natanz and Fordo facilities. The report also said that Iran was also converting its stockpile of medium-enriched uranium into uranium oxide, a diluted form.

It added that Iran “is not conducting any further advances to its activities” at Natanz, Fordo or the heavy-water reactor under construction at Arak. Iran “is continuing to construct” a plant for the conversion of low-enriched uranium needed to ensure that its reserve of this material does not grow during the next half-year, the IAEA report said.

“It’s all fine, all their requirements have been fulfilled,” one diplomat told the press. A second said: “It is promising, although there is a lot of work to do” over the next six months. Under the terms of the 24 November agreement, Iran has pledged to limit enrichment to low purities for a period of six months, convert its medium-enriched uranium and not make further advances at its nuclear facilities.

The IAEA also will be given additional inspection rights, including daily visits to Natanz and Fordo and access to centrifuge workshops. In exchange Western powers will loosen crippling sanctions in a package worth between $6-7 billion, including $4.2 billion in frozen overseas foreign exchange assets in eight instalments starting 1 February.