High Representative expresses concern over Iran’s latest uranium enrichment activities
The High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, has issued a statement in which he voices concern over Iran’s latest uranium enrichment activities. According to Reuters, Iran has resumed uranium enrichment, by an increase of up to 20% in its Fordow nuclear plant, in breach of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the international agreement limiting Iran’s nuclear activities of which the EU is a signatory.
Since the withdrawal of the US from the agreement in 2018, Iran has re-engaged in nuclear proliferation activities, despite its own commitments toward the JCPOA. In his latest statement, the High Representative ‘deeply regrets’ these steps and has noted that the 20% uranium enrichment is a ‘very serious’ development which is inconsistent with the JCPOA’s provisions on the Fordow plant. The EU lifted sanctions on Iran in 2016 following the implementation of the JCPOA, although sanctions regarding the human rights situation, support for terrorism, and on other grounds remain in place.
It was further reported by Reuters that the Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) expressed concern over the future of the agreement, with a remaining time frame of ‘weeks’ to revive it. In his statement, the High Representative reiterated the EU’s commitment and support for the JCPOA and noted that Iran’s behaviour is ‘inconsistent’ with the agreement’s provisions.
Read the High Representative’s full statement here.