by WorldTribune Staff, August 23, 2017
The chief of Iran’s atomic program said the United States would be shocked at how quickly the Islamic Republic could rebuild its stocks of highly enriched uranium should President Donald Trump walk away from the nuclear deal.
Ali Akbar Salehi, who is also one of Iran’s vice presidents, said on state TV that Teheran would be capable of creating highly enriched uranium “within at most five days” of the nuclear accord ending.
Salehi said Iran could quickly achieve 20 percent enriched uranium, a level at which it could then quickly be processed further into weapons-grade nuclear material. Iran’s permitted uranium enrichment is currently capped at 5 percent.
“Definitely, we are not interested in such a thing happening,” Salehi said. “We have not achieved the deal easily to let it go easily. We are committed to the deal and we are loyal to it.”
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, who began his second term earlier this month, said last week that U.S. “threats and sanctions” would give Iran reason to build up its nuclear resources.
“In an hour and a day, Iran could return to a more advanced level than at the beginning of the negotiations” he said.
Saying the U.S. was not a “good partner,” Rouhani added: “Those who are trying to go back to the language of threats and sanctions are prisoners of their past hallucinations… They deprive themselves of the advantages of peace.”