The West could not stop Iran from building nuclear weapons, says Khamenei; but open to a deal

Amid increasing tension between Iran and Israel over Iran’s advanced nuclear programme, Country’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Sunday said that the ‘West could not stop Iran from building nuclear weapons if Tehran wanted a pursue a nuclear arms programme’.

According to the state media, Khamenei said “Talks about Tehran’s nuclear weapons is a lie and they (the West) know it. We do not want nuclear arms based on our religious believes. Otherwise they would not have been able to stop it”.

While maintaining that the country should continue working with the UN nuclear watchdog, Khamenei said that “a deal with the West over the nuclear programme is possible but only if Tehran can keep its nuclear infrastructure intact”.

“There is nothing wrong with the agreement [with the West], but the infrastructure of our nuclear industry should not be touched,” he said.

The statements made by the supreme leader hold great significance as reports indicate reports that Iran has increased its Uranium stockpile. Its total enriched uranium is now 21 times more than the limits imposed on it under the now-defunct Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear deal, according to the Sky News report.

Also, Iran unveiled a hypersonic missile earlier this month and even claimed that it has the capability of hitting Israel within 400 seconds and can evade Iron Dome defence system.

In 2015 Iran signed JCPOA which lifted sanctions in exchange for stringent nuclear inspections. But in 2018 Iran was slapped with draconian sanctions after President Donald Trump pulled the US out of it. In response, Iran broke the terms of the deal, most notably enriching uranium beyond the permitted limits.

Uranium is the chemical element that can be used for nuclear energy or, potentially, weapons.
Now, US President Joe Biden negotiating with Iran to agree to return to full compliance with US back into the deal. However, Iran has showed distrust saying “No, we don’t trust you, you go first. We will comply fully once sanctions are lifted,” according to reports by BBC.

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