Periodic alerts providing news and analysis on the negotiations and implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action between the P5+1 (China, Germany, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States) and Iran over the latter's nuclear program. To receive these by email, subscribe to our regular updates list.
An explosion at Iran’s Natanz enrichment facility appears to have impacted the country’s nuclear program, but the IAEA said its safeguards activities at that site were unimpeded. The U.S. continues its push to extend the arms embargo on Iran at the UN Security Council, and Iran’s parliament has approved a plan to halt implementation of the additional protocol to the country’s safeguards agreement with the IAEA.
The IAEA Board of Governors passed a resolution calling on Iran to cooperate fully with the Agency, including on the Agency's investigation into inconsistencies related to Iran’s pre-2003 nuclear activities. An IAEA report revealed that Iran’s low-enriched uranium stockpile continues to grow, and the Trump administration terminated additional non-proliferation sanctions waivers.
The Trump administration is considering a range of options to prevent the October 2020 expiration of a UN embargo that restricts arms sales to and from Iran, including by making a legal case that the United States remains a participant of the JCPOA. The United States is continuing its maximum pressure campaign against Iran throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite facing economic hardship, Iran unveiled a new military-led space program and launched a new satellite in April.
Iran has delayed announcing updates on its nuclear achievements, perhaps due to the COVID-19 outbreak, though the IAEA is continuing inspections in the country. The United States has renewed sanctions waivers on four cooperative projects in the nuclear deal and Europe's new trade facilitation vehicle has made its first successful transaction.
The IAEA released two new reports detailing Iran’s implementation of its broad and JCPOA-specific safeguards agreements with the Agency, indicating that Iran has not taken further steps to breach the nuclear deal. The members of the governing JCPOA Joint Commission met in Vienna in an attempt to salvage the deal, and a trade channel opened to facilitate necessary humanitarian trade with Iran.