Iran honoring nuclear deal but nearing heavy-water limit again: IAEA

Iran honoring nuclear deal but nearing heavy-water limit again: IAEA

Iran has stayed within limits on its nuclear activities imposed by a 2015 deal with world powers but is close to once again breaching a ceiling on its stock of one chemical, a quarterly report by the U.N. atomic watchdog showed on Friday, Reuters reported.

The report was the second since the January inauguration of U.S. President Donald Trump, who has called the pact between six powers and Iran "the worst deal ever negotiated" and branded Tehran an enemy in contrast with his predecessor Barack Obama.

Iran's stock of low-enriched uranium as of May 27 was 79.8 kg (175.5 pounds), well below a 202.8-kg (446-pound) limit, and the level of enrichment did not exceed a 3.67 percent cap, the International Atomic Energy said in a confidential report sent to IAEA member states and seen by Reuters.

"Everything is running smoothly at this point in time," one senior diplomat said, referring to Iranian compliance with the restrictions under the deal.

Obtaining enough highly enriched uranium or plutonium is the biggest hurdle to producing a nuclear weapon. The 2015 deal aimed to extend the time Iran would need to build an atomic bomb, if it chose to, to a year from a few months. Weapons-grade uranium has an enrichment level of around 90 percent.

But Iran's stock of heavy water, a chemical used as a moderator in a type of nuclear reactor that can produce plutonium, reached 128.2 tonnes, just below a 130-tonne limit, the IAEA report said. Iran was building one such reactor but it has had its core removed under the deal and is being redesigned.

Tehran has already breached that limit twice since the deal took effect, prompting the IAEA to express "concerns" and drawing rebukes from Washington and other Western powers.

The deal calls for any excess amount to be sold to a foreign buyer, and Iran has shipped the surplus to Oman while it looks for one.

HEAVY WATER PLAN SHUTDOWN

Iran is not now making heavy water because its production plant has been shut down for maintenance. Diplomats said this could have been due to Tehran not wanting to raise tensions around its May 19 presidential election, which was won by pragmatist Hassan Rouhani, who championed the deal.

The IAEA verified the shutdown on May 16.

It is not clear when the heavy-water production plant will reopen but if it happened today a realistic time by which Iran would reach the 130-tonne limit would be "somewhere in the second half of July", the senior diplomat said.

The Trump administration indicated its support for the Oman arrangement in April by acknowledging Iran was meeting its commitments under the 2015 deal, which also lifted tough economic sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

Washington has, however, voiced concern about other Iranian actions, including ballistic-missile testing and what it calls Tehran's role as a "state sponsor of terrorism".

Those actions spurred Trump to accuse Iran of violating the spirit of the nucleara agreement. However, Trump extended sanctions relief against Iran last month, indicating he has decided to keep backing the deal, at least for now.

At the same time, his administration has launched a wider policy review on how to deal with the Islamic Republic.

(This version of the story has been refiled to make 11th paragraph read "...heavy-water production plant")

Georgia's tourism industry has encouraging trend
Georgia's tourism industry has encouraging trend
Irish airline names Georgian capital best travel destination of year
Irish airline names Georgian capital best travel destination of year
Number of Turkish citizens looking for job in Georgia increases
Number of Turkish citizens looking for job in Georgia increases
Loading Bars
Latest
ICC trial in The Hague one option for Sudan's Bashir: minister
Kazakhstan's Kashagan field's operator talks operational highlights over 2019
Azerbaijani banks to join Agriculture Loan Evaluation System
Georgia's tourism industry has encouraging trend
Minister: Georgia confirms its reliability by active participation in regional projects
Georgian Kutaisi Airport to be one of leading airports in terms of infrastructure: minister
New agreement between Azerbaijan and EU discussed in Brussels
Container turnover increases in Georgia
Analyst: Pashinyan's groundless comments in Munich left people puzzled
Iran's Central Oil Fields Company discloses its technology needs
ICT official talks on increasing cyber-attacks on Iran
Iran reveals another satellite-related plan to be implemented until 2023
Iran Customs using academic capabilities to meet its needs
Uzbekistan abolishes ineffective tax benefits
Uzbekistan's Commodity Exchange reveals its gold trade for January 2020
Iran discloses amount of funds allocated for import of products
Iran's export of dates down
Agricultural insurance up in Iran's Parsabad county
President of Uzbekistan to visit Turkey
Iran discloses amount of investments made in Maku Free Trade Zone
Azerbaijani CEC makes statement on halting election results at some polling stations
Azerbaijani insurance company discloses funds paid for treatment of cancer patients in 2019
Volume of insurance premiums in Azerbaijan in relation to country’s GDP revealed
Azerbaijan's ART Group Logistic talks plans for 2020
Georgian company producing dried fruits to expand production
Gunmen kill 24 in attack on Burkina Faso church
Turkmenistan, United Nations discuss joint action plan
IRICA confiscates large consignment of smuggled cigarettes
Make more purchases at “Park Bulvar” and win a ticket for two to Europe!
Kazakhstan increases production of silver
Export of steel from Turkey to China increases
Iran's decision to release imported autos needs to be reviewed
Editor-in-chief: President Ilham Aliyev puzzles Pashinyan before OSCE MG co-chairs
Bakcell supports int’l conference (PHOTO)
Azerbaijan’s CEC annuls parliamentary election results on 7 precincts
Iran hands over project related to oil field to Petropars company
Kazakhstan's Aviation Administration to issue report on Bek Air inspection results
Production of Iran's South Pars Gas Complex up
Completion period of logistics center in Turkey’s Kars province revealed
Subsidiary of Azerbaijan Railways starts co-op with Rail Cargo Group Hungary
MP: Azerbaijani president destroyed Armenian PM’s points by facts and arguments
Number of cars transported via Turkish ports in Jan. 2020 disclosed
Structural changes occur in Compulsory Insurance Bureau of Azerbaijan
Kazakhstan prohibits poultry goods import from Ukraine due to bird flu outbreak
Major part of Iran’s export market accounts for petrochemical industry
Expert: Azerbaijani President showed high level of political, diplomatic experience
Mexican Grupo Bimbo to establish its JV in Kazakhstan
Steel export from Turkey to Azerbaijan drops
Irish airline names Georgian capital best travel destination of year
Hungary eyes to import gas from Azerbaijan in several years
Alibaba offers $2.86 billion in loans to firms hit by coronavirus outbreak
Georgia to set up Digital Management Agency
Turkmenistan to develop co-op with Russia's Tatarstan
Baku Network: Pashinyan again resorted to false assertion of Armenian propaganda on Karabakh
Uzbekistan’s UzAuto Motors to begin selling cars under new brand
Russian analyst: Azerbaijani president convincingly defeated Pashinyan with facts on Karabakh
Number of Kazakh citizens buying real estate in Turkey increases
Coronavirus could lead to a drastic reduction in demand estimates, says IEA
IEA: Gas market to remain well supplied as sources further diversify and compete
Apple warns virus hitting Israel's iPhone inventory
Photographer of Azerbaijan Airlines magazine becomes AIPS award winner (PHOTO)
Azerbaijan’s Sumgayit city opens tender to repair roads, streets
Number of Turkish citizens looking for job in Georgia increases
Larijani: Iranian businessmen eager to cooperate in Syria reconstruction
Beijing to fast-track new mask factory in virus fight
IEA: Southern Gas Corridor to contribute to further enhancing competitiveness in European gas market
China may delay key parliament, political panel meetings
Kazakhstan's KazMunayGas to hold negotiations on participation in Kalamkas Sea dev't
World Bank to help Uzbekistan increase resilience to earthquakes
Cargo transshipment from Algeria through Turkish ports disclosed
Turkmenistan reveals expected figure of foreign trade within 2019-2025
Iran finds way to substitute Samsung, LG goods on domestic market
Zenith Energy reveals volume of sales from Azerbaijani assets
Demand at auction of Azerbaijan's Central Bank considerably exceeds supply
Zenith Energy reduces its debt position
Iran's auto production significantly up
Kazakhstan significantly increases salt export volume
Uzbek commodity exchange increases cotton exports
Turkmenistan discloses volume of electricity generation
Oil products to be put up for sale at Iran Energy Exchange
Fitch affirms Georgia at "BB", Outlook Stable
SOCAR Ukraine Trading House wins court case against Ukrainian Energy Exchange
Norway's 2020 headline inflation seen easing to 1.5%
Baku Higher Oil School starts cooperating with Tallinn University of Technology (PHOTO)
Azerbaijani MP: President Ilham Aliyev exposed Pashinyan's lies with facts and logic
Agricultural exports of Iran's East Azerbaijan province up
Ranking of Azerbaijani banks in terms of loan portfolio
Iran starts issuing permits for exploration of hydrocarbon resouces
Wheat production to grow in Iran’s Khuzestan province
Kazakh national postal service operator to buy accumulators via tender
Turkey’s export of cement to Azerbaijan increases
Number of Turkish citizens looking for job in Uzbekistan drops
Iran discloses revenues from exporting medicinal plants
Number of subscribers of Georgian electricity distribution company increases
Turkey - Kyrgyzstan trade up in 2019
Iranian Energy Exchange discloses volume of buying, selling goods
Kazakhstan's private companies promoting renewable energy dev't in Pavlodar
Moody’s analyzes Azerbaijan’s potential economic risks
Iran reveals volume of daily car production
Azerbaijani MP: President Ilham Aliyev put Pashinyan in hopeless situation
All news