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Blinken: Iran Back to Point Where it Could Produce Fissile Material For Nuclear Weapon

Blinken: Iran Back to Point Where it Could Produce Fissile Material For Nuclear Weapon

Wednesday, 3 March, 2021 - 06:45
Antony Blinken speaks during his confirmation hearing to be secretary of state before the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee, on January 19, 2021 in Washington, DC. (AFP)

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken warned on Tuesday that Iran is now getting back to that point where it could produce fissile material for a weapon on very short order.

He also said that the administration of President Joe Biden has made a clear commitment to re-engage in diplomacy to return to the Nuclear Deal.

“Before the (2015) agreement, Iran was speeding toward the day when it would have the ability to produce enough fissile material for a nuclear weapon on very short order. At the time we reached the agreement, it was getting down toward weeks,” Blinken reaffirmed.

However, he noted that Washington, along with its allies and partners, are also prepared to take strong action as necessary against some of the things Iran does, referring to Tehran’s regional activities and the development of ballistic missiles.

The new US Secretary of state was speaking Tuesday during an interview with Hillary Clinton, who said that negotiations are difficult and time-consuming, adding that in the Iran agreement, the US got a long way towards stopping Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, all of which was then thrown out the window by the Trump administration.

Former US President Donald Trump withdrew from the agreement in 2018 and re-imposed crippling sanctions on Iran.

Blinken said the US has an interest in putting the Nuclear Deal back in a box and then seeing if Washington can actually build something even longer and stronger in terms of the duration of the agreement.

“We’re a long way from getting back to where we were. We don’t know what Iran will do or won’t do. But I think that it offers at least the possibility of dealing with the nuclear problem and then hopefully dealing with some of the other problems,” the US official said.

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