İrem UZUN -TDO- Iran continues to increase its stockpile of enriched uranium in violation of the 2015 nuclear deal but has started allowing access to sites where Tehran was suspected of having stored or used undeclared nuclear material, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said Friday. According to the agency, Iran's stockpile of enriched uranium now stands at more than ten times the limit set down in the nuclear deal.
Iran signed the nuclear deal in 2015 with the United States, Germany, France, Britain, China and Russia. Known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, it allows Iran only to keep a stockpile of 202.8 kilograms. However, IAEA reported in a confidential document that Iran as of Aug. 25 had stockpiled 2,105.4 kilograms of low-enriched uranium, up from 1,571.6 kilograms last reported on May 20. The IAEA reported that Iran has also been continuing to enrich uranium to a purity of up to 4.5%, higher than the 3.67% allowed under the JCPOA. It said Iran's stockpile of heavy water -which helps cool nuclear reactors- had decreased, however, and is now back within the JCPOA limits.
The nuclear deal promised Iran economic incentives in return for the curbs on its nuclear program. President Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out of the deal unilaterally in 2018, saying it needed to be renegotiated. Since then, Iran has slowly violated the restrictions to try and pressure the remaining nations to increase the incentives to offset new U.S. sanctions.