by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) – The head of the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) stated Thursday that Iran is removing 27 surveillance cameras from its nuclear sites, in a move that may kill off all hope of reviving the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the Times of Israel (TOI) reports.
IAEA chief Rafael Mariano Grossi added that the removal of cameras would cripple his agency’s ability to monitor Iran’s nuclear program, just as the Iranians are reaching the verge of nuclear weapons capability.
Grossi said there would still be some 40 cameras in place, TOI reports. However, Grossi said, the removal of more than two dozen cameras could result in a “serious challenge” to IAEA efforts to keep track of Iran’s nuclear program. Moreover, Grossi said, within 3 to 4 weeks the agency would be unable to maintain a “continuity of knowledge” about Iran’s program.
In regard to the faltering talks between world powers and Iran over renewing the JCPOA, Grossi said the removal of cameras would issue “a fatal blow” to those negotiations. “We are in a very tense situation with the negotiations over the (nuclear deal) at a low ebb,” Grossi attested. “Now we are adding this to the picture; as you can see it’s not a very nice one.”
The JCPOA deal collapsed in 2018 after former President Donald Trump unilaterally took the US out of the deal and reimposed sanctions on Iran. The Iranians went on to enrich uranium at levels that far exceed the limits allowed by JCPOA – levels that are now so high that Iran is very close to being able to produce several nuclear bombs in a matter of months. Parties to the former deal, including the US, have been trying to revive the JCPOA since the beginning of the Biden administration, so far to no avail.
Following an IAEA censure for failing to provide “credible information” over man-made nuclear material found at three undeclared sites, on Wednesday Iran said it had turned off the Online Enrichment Monitor and flowmeter devices that the nuclear watchdog agency uses to monitor Iranian nuclear activity.
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