U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Office of the Spokesperson
For Immediate Release
December 28, 2023
Joint Statement on the latest Iranian nuclear steps reported by the IAEA
The text of the following statement was released by the Governments of the United States of America, France, Germany and the United Kingdom.
The December 26, 2023, report by the IAEA highlights that Iran has increased its rate of production of uranium enriched up to 60% at Natanz and Fordow to levels observed between January and June 2023. These findings represent a backwards step by Iran and will result in Iran tripling its monthly production rate of uranium enriched up to 60%.
We condemn this action, which adds to the unabated escalation of Iran’s nuclear program. The production of high-enriched uranium by Iran has no credible civilian justification and the reported production at the Fordow Fuel Enrichment Plant and the Pilot Fuel Enrichment Plant further carries significant proliferation-related risks. We also take note of Iran’s decision to revert to the same cascade configuration as the one discovered by the IAEA in Fordow earlier this year. Iran’s delay in declaring this change in January 2023 cast serious doubts on Iran’s willingness to cooperate with the IAEA in full transparency.
These decisions demonstrate Iran’s lack of good will towards de-escalation and represent reckless behavior in a tense regional context.
We urge Iran to immediately reverse these steps and de-escalate its nuclear program. Iran must fully cooperate with the IAEA to enable it to provide assurances that its nuclear program is exclusively peaceful, and to re-designate the inspectors suspended in September 2023.
We remain committed to a diplomatic solution and reaffirm our determination that Iran must never develop a nuclear weapon.
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