Iran Warns It Can Make Weapons-Grade Nuclear Material in Days

The Fellowship  |  August 22, 2017

Ali Akbar Salehi, head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organisation addresses a press conference with the Czech foreign minister on May 2, 2016, in Prague. / AFP / Michal Cizek (Photo credit should read MICHAL CIZEK/AFP/Getty Images)

As the United States ponders the questionable Iranian nuclear deal of 2015, Iran is making threats if the agreement is scrapped. At The Times of Israel, Nasser Karimi reports that the Islamic Republic says it can work to make weapons-grade nuclear material in less than a week if the deal falls through:

Iran’s atomic chief warned Tuesday the Islamic Republic needs only five days to ramp up its uranium enrichment to 20 percent, a level at which the material could be used for a nuclear weapon.

The comments by Ali Akbar Salehi to Iranian state television come as US President Donald Trump repeatedly has threatened to renegotiate or walk away from the 2015 nuclear deal.

Salehi’s warning, along with recent comments by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, show Iran is willing to push back against Trump while still acknowledging they want to keep the deal, which lifted crippling economic sanctions on the country.

“If there is a plan for a reaction and a challenge, we will definitely surprise them,” said Salehi, who also serves as one of Rouhani’s vice presidents. “If we make the determination, we are able to resume 20 percent-enrichment in at most five days…”

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