Jerusalem, Feb. 26 – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said inspectors for the International Atomic Energy Agency have confirmed that Iran is pushing its nuclear program ahead while ignoring the international community.
“The IAEA report constitutes additional proof that the State of Israel's assessments are correct,” Netanyahu said in a statement. “Iran is continuing with its nuclear program without let-up; it is enriching uranium to a high level of 20 percent while grossly ignoring the demands of the international community.”
Iran is under United Nation and other international sanctions because of its refusal to open its nuclear facilities to inspection. Tehran claims that its nuclear program is for peaceful civilian purposes, but a previous IAEA report last year concluded Iran was also carrying out actions that could only be related to the development of nuclear bombs.
Iranian leaders continue to defy international demands that their nuclear program be completely open to inspection, and the country is feeling the pressure of international economic sanctions. The national currency, the rial, has lost more than 50 percent of its value in the past three months, yet despite the sanctions, Tehran is apparently plowing ahead with the development of nuclear weapons.
U.N. officials confirmed reports that Iran had stonewalled the agency’s efforts to investigate allegations that Iran’s scientists had conducted extensive research on how to build a nuclear warhead, the Washington Post reported. When IAEA inspectors visited Iran last week, Iranian officials twice refused an IAEA request to visit a key research facility where some of the alleged experiments were said to have occurred.