Iran announced that it is now enriching uranium to 60% purity, a dramatic rise from the 20% they announced last year and the 3.67% permitted under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), which they began openly violating following the US departure in 2018.
As Iran is now just one small technical step away from weapons-grade nuclear material, it seems obvious that the JCPOA was flawed from the start and failed to stop the mullahs from continuing their nuclear program; something that should have been obvious from their very first violations.
The speed at which the regime could move to 60% enrichment suggests that the regime never actually stopped the program as it should have. After all, they re-installed advanced centrifuges and resumed full activity almost instantaneously. In fact, Atomic Energy Organization head Ali Akbar Salehi said in November 2019 that the regime had effectively tricked the rest of the deal’s signatories into believing that they’d destroyed their centrifuges and that there were always measures in place to ensure that Iran could quickly restart its nuclear program.
By that measure, it’s hard to say that the JCPOA actually did anything, which is why the deal’s signatories must stand up to the regime’s nuclear extortion with sanctions and isolation.
The Iranian opposition has spent the last five years exposing the regime’s lies about its nuclear program, calling for stricter rules and harsher punishments for the violations of the deal. Earlier this month, Mohammad Mohaddessin, chair of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) Foreign Affairs Committee, said that “the JCPOA did not dissuade the regime from obtaining a nuclear bomb” or any of the other nefarious activities not covered in the deal over the last six years.
He said: “The mullahs spent the financial windfall resulting from lifting the sanctions to arm, train, and finance their proxies in the Middle East, renew their terrorist plots on European soil, advance and expand their ballistic missile program, continue their nuclear program, and suppress the Iranian people. If the past is prologue, no amount of political or economic concessions under any pretext will moderate this regime’s behaviour. Denial, deception, and duplicity are part of its DNA.”
And to think that these comments were made before the regime increased its violations of the deal by pursuing 60% enrichment. It just goes to show that there is no doubt about the regime continuing its nuclear program, which is why the international community must increase pressure on the regime at once to stop the threat in its tracks.