Iran on the verge of enriching weapons-grade uranium, possibly to gain leverage during Vienna talks, Israel warns U.S.
By World Israel News Staff
Iran is preparing to enrich uranium to a 90 percent level of purity, bringing the Islamic Republic closer than ever to obtaining a nuclear weapon, Israeli intelligence agencies warned the U.S. as nuclear talks resume.
According to an Axios report, Israel told U.S. officials that Iran may “take that dramatic step” of enriching uranium to a 90 percent level in the near future as part of an “attempt to gain leverage in the Vienna talks.”
Blaming former president Donald Trump for his unilateral withdrawal from the previous nuclear deal, a senior Biden administration insider told Axios that it’s “no secret that the former administration’s decision to abandon the 2015 nuclear deal led to a dramatic and unprecedented acceleration of Iran’s nuclear program.”
Defense Minister Benny Gantz said during a media conference on Monday that Iran “is continuing to rush toward a nuclear” weapon.
“There needs to be a price that is expressed in economic sanctions and military activities so that the Iranians halt their nuclear race and their regional aggression,” he added.
U.K. Foreign Minister Liz Truss said during a meeting in London with her Israeli counterpart Yair Lapid that many in the west were losing patience with Iran’s foot dragging on returning to a nuclear agreement.
She said the Vienna talks are “the last opportunity for the Iranians to come to the table” and that the Islamic Republic would be wise to take advantage of a diplomatic solution before that possibility is lost.
“We will look at all options if that doesn’t happen,” she added.
Iranian chief nuclear negotiator, Ali Bagheri Kani, told the Financial Times that Iran would only agree to a deal if the U.S. “pays a price” for withdrawing from the previous nuclear accord.
The U.S would also need to end all sanctions against Iran before the Islamic Republic considers re-entering the deal, a condition which the Biden administration has previously said they would not honor.