Iran's cooperation sufficient, but not proactive

16 November 2007

Iranis using 2952 centrifuge machines to enrich uranium, contrary to the decisions of the UN Security Council. The country is cooperating with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), but only in a reactive way 'insufficent for full implementation of verification work'.

In his latest report on Iran's nuclear program, International Atomic Energy Agency director general Mohamed ElBaradei confirmed that Iran is continuing to enrich uranium and continuing to construct the IR-40 heavy water reactor at Arak. Eighteen cascades of 164 uranium enrichment centrifuges are in operation at Natanz, which have been fed with 1240 kg of uranium hexafluoride and have achieved confirmed enrichment levels of 4.0% uranium-235. Iranian scientists claim they have achieved 4.8%. Seven surprise inspections have been carried out at Natanz since March this year.

ElBaradei wrote that his agency had been able to verify that no declared nuclear material in Iran had been diverted from peaceful use, but that since early 2006 Iran had not released information as it would have under the Additional Protocol of the Nuclear non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). This has meant that "IAEA's knowledge of Iran's current nuclear program is diminishing."

On cooperation ElBaradei said the Iranians had "provided sufficient access to individuals and responded in a timely manner to questions,"but that this had been reactive rather than proactive. He said: "Iran's active cooperation and full transparency are indispensable for full and prompt implementation of the [IAEA's] work plan."

ElBaradei said that the IAEA "is not in a position to provide credible assurances about the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran without full implementation of the Additional Protocol." He urged Iran to implement that part of the NPT as soon as possible - and to suspend uranium enrichment, as already demanded by the UN Security Council.

Further information

International Atomic Energy Agency

WNA's Iraq, North Korea & Iran - Implications for Safeguards information paper

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