Paris, 9 November 2011
The unprecedented report which has just been published by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) increases France’s deep concern with regard to Iran’s nuclear programme.
In its report, the IAEA expresses its "serious concerns" and describes Iranian activities which are "specific to nuclear weapons".
The Agency reports on activities carried out by Iran in all necessary areas to develop a nuclear weapon: work on uranium metal components, explosives, hydrodynamic experiments, calculations codes, neutronic initiation, nuclear test preparations, and integration into a missile. It recalls that Iran has secretly developed its nuclear programme, as was demonstrated by the international community’s discovery of the Qom site in 2009.
The report shows that Iran has never really cooperated to dispel the Agency’s doubts as to its activities in highly sensitive areas, and in 2008 ceased all dialogue with the Agency on these issues.
Furthermore, the Agency recalls that Iran is continuing its sensitive programmes in Natanz, Qom and Arak, with in particular the installation of centrifuges in Qom this summer and the announcement of a tripling of its 20% enrichment capacities. All of these activities breach the resolutions of the United Nations Security Council and IAEA Board of Governors, and have no credible civilian applications.
The elements of the IAEA report on military dimensions to Iran’s nuclear programme, alongside the accumulation of enriched uranium and the continued ballistic tests, paint a picture which leaves little doubt as to Iran’s intentions.
All this means that Iran has sought, and is most likely continuing to seek, to build a nuclear weapon, under the guise of a supposedly civilian and peaceful programme.
It is the responsibility of the IAEA Member States, the States Parties to the NPT and indeed the entire international community to react to the gravity of the facts reported by the Agency. The Board of Governors, which will convene next week, must adopt an extremely firm resolution urging Iran to finally clarify its activities relating to a military programme, both past and present, as soon as possible, by allowing IAEA inspectors to work unhindered. Iran must comply with the resolutions of the Security Council and Council of Governors.
France believes that we must move to the next level with regard to increasing diplomatic pressure on Iran. If Iran refuses to meet the requests of the international community, and refuses all serious cooperation, we are ready to adopt, with the support of the international community, sanctions of an unprecedented scale.
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