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IAEA Board of Governors on the JCPoA, June 2024: E3 statement

Chair,

On behalf of France, Germany and the United Kingdom, I thank Director General Grossi for his latest report on Iran’s nuclear programme.

The E3 are very grateful to the Agency for the professional, independent and impartial work of their team of inspectors and for their objective reporting on Iran’s nuclear programme. We encourage the Director General to keep the Board informed of all relevant activities and developments.

It is no surprise that the IAEA’s report once again confirms that Iran continues to escalate its proliferation sensitive nuclear activities, moving even further from its JCPoA commitments. Much of Iran’s nuclear programme is unprecedented for a state without a nuclear weapons programme.

Chair,

In the reporting period, Iran has continued enriching uranium far beyond its JCPoA commitments. It now possesses 30 times the JCPoA limit of enriched uranium and its stockpile of high enriched uranium up to 60 % has continued to grow significantly. Iran now has three IAEA significant quantities of highly enriched uranium, which the IAEA defines as the approximate amount of nuclear material from which the possibility of manufacturing a nuclear explosive device cannot be excluded. The DG also reports that Iran continues to prepare for new enrichment capacities at the Fuel Enrichment Plant, where new cascades of centrifuges could be installed soon.

We recall previous IAEA reports of Iran’s uranium metal-related work. The production of Uranium metal is a key step for the development of a nuclear weapon. We urge Iran not to undertake this work again.

For years now, the Agency’s JCPoA-related verification and monitoring has been seriously affected by Iran’s refusal to implement its nuclear-related commitments under the JCPoA, including Iran’s decision to have all of the Agency’s JCPOA-related surveillance and monitoring equipment removed.

As a consequence, and as the DG reiterates in his report, the Agency has lost continuity of knowledge in relation to the production and inventory of centrifuges, rotors and bellows, heavy water and UOC. The IAEA does not know, for example, how many centrifuges Iran has and where they are located.

The DG notes that it has been more than three years since Iran stopped applying its Additional Protocol. Iran has also not reversed its decision to withdraw the designations for experimented inspectors. All of these decisions made by Iran have detrimental implications for the Agency’s ability to provide assurance of the exclusively peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear programme.

Chair,

The E3 have consistently worked towards a diplomatic solution. In 2022 Iran twice refused a negotiated outcome which would have returned Iran to compliance with the JCPoA. Instead, Iran has chosen to escalate and to expand its nuclear programme to alarming levels.

We therefore urge Iran:

  1. To immediately halt its nuclear escalation and refrain from making threats to produce nuclear weapons;
  2. To return to the limits imposed by the JCPoA, in particular those regarding enrichment;
  3. To implement the commitments it made regarding transparency and cooperation with the IAEA including re-applying all transparency measures that it stopped in February 2021;
  4. To re-implement and swiftly ratify its Additional Protocol; and
  5. To reverse its September 2023 decision to withdraw the designations of experienced inspectors.

These steps would help rebuild the urgently needed trust between Iran and the international community, a trust that has been further eroded by recent statements made in Iran about its technical capabilities to produce nuclear weapons and the possibility of changing its nuclear doctrine.

Chair,

Iran’s escalating nuclear activities significantly harm international security and undermine the global non-proliferation architecture. We will continue consultations, alongside international partners, on how best to address the increasing doubts about the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear programme. We remain committed to a diplomatic solution and stand ready to use all diplomatic levers available to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons.

Finally, we ask the Director General to keep the Board of Governors informed on the status of Iran’s nuclear programme. We ask for the report to be made public.

Thank you.

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