UN: Maintenance issues prevent Iran from breaching nuclear deal

Maintenance of a heavy water production facility has kept Iran from breaching the nuclear deal. 

The United Nations nuclear agency says Iran has taken its heavy water producing plant offline for maintenance, a move that keeps it from violating the controversial nuclear agreement by keeping the amount of the reactor coolant under the limits proscribed by the deal.

A confidential report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) seen by The Associated Press said Friday that a May 27 inspection showed “the plant … shut down” for maintenance.

At the time of the report, Tehran’s heavy water stockpile was at 128.2 metric tons, just under the limit of 130 metric tons (over 143 tons.)

Heavy water cools reactors capable of producing plutonium, which is used to make the core of nuclear warheads.

The IAEA last year said that Tehran had slightly exceeded the limit, but later decided it was again in compliance.

Iran’s stock of low-enriched uranium was at 79.8 kilograms, well below the 300 kilograms limit, the report said. The level of uranium enrichment did not exceed a 3.67 percent cap, under the maximum five percent regarded as suitable for civilian energy uses.

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Under the 2015 deal, US-led world powers eased economic sanctions after the United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) confirmed that Iran took steps to pull its nuclear program back from the brink of weapons capability.

Reza Najafi, Iranian ambassador to the IAEA, claimed Saturday that the report has once again confirmed Tehran’s full cooperation with the nuclear deal.

By: World Israel News Staff
AP contributed to this report.