Washington, June 1 (ANI): A United Nations Security Council (UNSC) report revealed on Monday that Iran has now produced a stockpile of nuclear fuel that experts say would be enough, with further enrichment, to make two nuclear weapons.
The inspectors reported Monday that Iran has now produced over 5,300 pounds of low-enriched uranium, all of which would have to undergo further enrichment before it could be converted to bomb fuel.
The inspectors reported that Iran had expanded work at its sprawling Natanz site in the desert, where it is raising the level of uranium enrichment up to 20 percent - the level needed for the Tehran Research Reactor, which produces medical isotopes for cancer patients.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report will bolster the Obama administration's case for a fourth round of economic sanctions against Iran and further diminish its interest in a deal, recently revived by Turkey and Brazil, in which Iran would send a portion of its nuclear stockpile out of the country.
According to the New York Times, the toughly worded report says that Iran has expanded work at one of its nuclear sites. It also describes, step by step, how inspectors have been denied access to a series of facilities, and how Iran has refused to answer inspectors' questions on a variety of activities, including what the agency called the "possible existence" of "activities related to the development of a nuclear payload for a missile."
White House spokesman Michael Hammer said in a statement on Monday that the report "clearly shows Iran's continued failure to comply with its international obligations and its sustained lack of cooperation with the I.A.E.A."
He said the report "underscores that Iran has refused to take any of the steps required of it" by the Security Council or the IAEA's board of governors, "which are necessary to enable constructive negotiations on the future of its nuclear program."
Iran, which insists that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes, has said that it has conducted no work on weapons, and argues that the evidence of work on warheads is forged.
Iran's nuclear progress was expected to be a central subject at a meeting scheduled for Tuesday at the White House between President Obama and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel.
But Netanyahu canceled the visit after a deadly raid by Israeli commandos on ships carrying supplies to Gaza.
Iran has sought to locate many of its nuclear facilities in underground sites so as to lessen their vulnerability to aerial attacks.
The IAEA report quoted an Iranian letter as saying the second, underground laboratory was needed "to meet security measures." (ANI)