The United Nations' atomic energy agency has confirmed Iran has surpassed the uranium enrichment limits spelled out in the 2015 nuclear deal.
The International Atomic Energy Agency said its inspectors verified Monday that Iran has surpassed the 3.67% enrichment limit set in the accord, aimed at restraining Tehran's ability to develop nuclear weapons in return for sanctions relief.
It did not specify by how much Iran exceeded the limit, but the Associated Press quotes a spokesman for Iran's Atomic Energy Organization on Monday as saying Tehran had enriched uranium to "around 4.5%" purity. Iran earlier said it could enrich uranium to 20% as it backs away from its commitments under the nuclear deal.
Uranium enriched to 5% is sufficient to produce fuel for nuclear power plants, but still far below the 90% needed for building a nuclear weapon. U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the nuclear deal last year and imposed tough sanctions on Iran.
Tehran has already pulled out of parts of the agreement and is threatening to move further and further away from it unless the remaining parties — Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia — provide economic relief from the crippling U.S. sanctions.
Source : VOA