Uranium Enrichment Plan Needs No IAEA Approval

Uranium Enrichment Plan Needs No IAEA Approval   Uranium Enrichment Plan Needs No IAEA Approval

Iran's long-term uranium enrichment and related R&D plan submitted to the International Atomic Energy Agency as part of the July 14, 2015, nuclear deal with major powers is not subject to the agency's approval and has been provided for the agency's information only, a lawmaker said.

An IAEA assessment report released last December marked the end of the agency's probe into Iran's past and present nuclear program.

Another report on Jan. 15 verified that the Islamic Republic had fulfilled its commitments to temporarily curb its nuclear program under the accord, formally entitled the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, in return for relief from international sanctions, triggering the implementation of the deal the following day.   

The UN agency is now tasked with monitoring Iran's nuclear activities to verify that they are pursued within the framework of the action plan.

The JCPOA has authorized Iran to continue uranium enrichment and enrichment research and development, but required it to compile and submit a related 15-year plan to the IAEA.  

The curbs Tehran accepted on its nuclear program included reducing the enriched uranium stockpiles to below 300 kg with purity levels of up to 3.67%, cutting by two-thirds the number of installed centrifuges at Fordo and Natanz enrichment facilities and redesigning the Arak heavy water reactor.  

The JCPOA says, "Based on its own long-term plan, for 15 years, Iran will carry out its uranium enrichment-related activities, including safeguarded R&D exclusively in the Natanz enrichment facility, keep its level of uranium enrichment at up to 3.67%, and, at Fordo, refrain from any uranium enrichment and related R&D and from keeping any nuclear material."

  Standard Plan

In an interview with ICANA on Monday, Deputy Chairman of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Commission Mansour Haqiqatpour said, "Among the commitments Iran had to meet was submitting its long-term nuclear plan after the JCPOA went into effect. It was done on the implementation day."

The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran was in charge of compiling the plan and the parliament has not been informed of the details, he added.

The ultraconservative faction in the parliament is strongly opposed to the JCPOA, so much so that some lawmakers went as far as calling the chief nuclear negotiator Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif a traitor and even threatening to bury AEOI head Ali Akbar Salehi and other negotiators in cement.

They claim that moderate President Hassan Rouhani, who championed the deal, and his negotiating team have granted too many concessions to the western side.

Another member of the commission said Iran is not required to seek the approval of the UN nuclear agency regarding its new nuclear plan. "The plan does not require and has not been submitted for the agency's approval, but it was only meant to notify the agency," Vahid Ahmadi said on Sunday.

"No objection was heard from any country or institution about the plan on the day it was submitted."

The lawmaker noted that this means it is a standard plan and, therefore, "the West must not raise any objection about the plan in future".