US, Israel on edge as Iran continues work on enrichment capacity

In light of recent reports from Tehran, the US has reiterated its vow to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons at all costs.
The Ghadr-110 missile is among the most developed by Iran Photo Credit: The Israel Project

Earlier this week, Iran announced on state television that it is on its way to increasing its nuclear enrichment capacity. According to Ali Akbar Salehi, the head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, construction on a new centrifuge assembly station at the Natanz nuclear site is now complete.

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said in a speech on Monday that Iran will continue to adhere to the limitations set by the nuclear deal. However, the new centrifuge assembly station could help Iran boost their enrichment levels should the agreement fall apart.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo took to Twitter Wednesday evening to respond to Tehran’s nuclear ambitions and said that the US is determined to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

“We’re watching reports that Iran plans to increase its enrichment capacity,” he wrote. “We won’t allow Iran to develop a nuclear weapon.” The new center, he tweeted, is “another example of Iran foolishly slandering its resource.”

The US left the JCPOA signed in 2015 between Iran and six world powers and promised to reinstate sanctions on Iran. "If we do nothing, we know exactly what will happen," US President Trump said when announcing the US decision to withdraw from the deal. "In just a short period of time, the world's leading state sponsor of terror will be on the cusp of acquiring the world's most dangerous weapon."

Intelligence reports by both German and Israeli sources recently brought to light Tehran’s secret work to develop long-range missiles and advanced nuclear technologies, but the IAEA claimed that Iran was still complying with the nuclear deal.

Israeli PM Netanyahu said in a video posted on social media that “two days ago, Ayatollah Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, said that he intends to destroy the State of Israel.”

“Yesterday [Monday] he explained how he would do that, with an unlimited enrichment of uranium to create an arsenal of nuclear bombs,” he said. “We are not surprised. We will not let Iran obtain nuclear weapons.”



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