U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice said the latest International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report on Iran shows the Tehran nuclear program poses a grave international threat.
Although recent reports claim that the nuclear talks that took place in Kazakhstan last week were more “constructive and positive than in the past,” Ayatollah Ali Khamenei had a different perspective.
“Western nations did not accomplish anything that can be construed as a concession, and instead they admitted Iran's rights only to a degree,” later adding that, “to assess their integrity, we must wait until the next round of talks.”
The P5+1 — United States, Great Britain, Germany, China, France, and Russia — was said to offer an effort to ease a ban on trade in gold and other precious metals, and a relaxation of an embargo on Iranian petrochemical products.
While the recent IAEA report continues to urge Iran to take steps “towards full implementation of its Safeguards Agreements,”, nothing substantial has been accomplished in the nine rounds of talks between the agency and Iranian officials.
Although the report discusses the Natanz Fuel Enrichment Plant (FEP) and the Fordow Fuel Enrichment Plant (FFEP), it sheds light on the Parchin scientific research facility. It claims, “In the year 2000, Iran constructed a large explosives containment vessel in which to conduct hydrodynamic experiments.” Although this fact has been in the public eye for some time now, this report suggests something else is going on at this location.
“Since the Agency’s first request for access to this location, however, satellite imagery shows that extensive activities and resultant changes have taken place at this location. The Agency has reiterated during each round of talks with Iran its request for access to the location at the Parchin site, but Iran has not acceded to that request.”
The report goes on to state that the most significant developments observed by satellite imagery include:
— Reinstatement of some of the chamber building’s features (e.g. wall panels and exhaust piping);
— Alterations to the roofs of the chamber building and the other large building;
— Dismantlement and reconstruction of the annex to the other large building;
— Construction of one small building at the same place where a building of similar size had previously been demolished;
— Spreading, leveling and compacting of another layer of material over a large area; and
— Installation of a fence that divides the location into two areas.
The report concludes with example 63, which states that for the first time, “Iran has started the installation of more advanced centrifuges (IR-2M) at FEP”
The United States Secretary of State, John Kerry, in a recent sit down with ABC News’ Martha Raddatz, said that the threat extends beyond the possibility that Iran could actually use the weapon on its enemies, specifically Israel. Iran obtaining nuclear weapons would merely “spur a nuclear arms race” in the region and could be used to support terrorist groups like Hezbollah. Kerry would later go on to say that the option to negotiate is “finite.”
He concluded the Iranian part of the interview by saying, “If they (Iran) keep pushing the limits and not coming to the table with a serious set of proposals or prepared to actually resolve this, obviously the risks get higher and confrontation becomes more possible.”
Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) recently told a major pro-Israel lobby that diplomatic efforts with Iran “have failed, and it is very clear that they are on a path to obtain a nuclear weapon.”
As pressure increases, President Obama will have some extremely tough choices to make regarding the Iranian nuclear program. Kerry has already stated, “The president's policy is that Iran will not get a nuclear weapon,” which leads one to believe that if Iran continues its secretive operations at Natanz, Fordow and Parchin without letting IAEA inspectors view its progress, Obama will have no choice but to intervene militarily.