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The Biden administration signaled this week that it may finally take action to stop the Islamic Republic of Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons as negotiations to get Iran to return to a nuclear agreement have stalled.
"The Iranian nuclear program has made significant advances in recent months that will be difficult to roll back - and that could potentially undercut the benefits of salvaging the 2015 accord, particularly if a deal isn't reached soon,"
Axios reported. "Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid told National Security adviser Jake Sullivan in their meeting at the White House on Tuesday that Israel feared Iran was becoming a 'nuclear threshold state.'"
Secretary of State Antony Blinken said, "Iran has been using this time to advance its nuclear program in a variety of ways, including enriching uranium to 20% and even 60%, using more advanced centrifuges, acquiring more knowledge."
"We are prepared to turn to other options if Iran doesn't change course,"
Blinken said. "Time is running short."
The latest remarks from the Biden administration on the matter come as reports from over the last several weeks indicate that Iran is dangerously close to having enough nuclear material to build a nuclear weapon. The Biden administration also lifted sanctions last week on two Iranian entities involved in Iran's missile program.
"The sanctions, targeting the Mammut Industrial Group (Mammut Industries) and its subsidiary Mammut Diesel, were originally imposed by the Trump administration in September 2020 as part of efforts to increase a maximum pressure campaign of sanctions on Tehran over its nuclear activity and actions in the region criticized as malign and destabilizing,"
The Hill reported. "The entities were identified as being 'key producers and suppliers of military-grade, dual-use goods for Iran's missile programs.'"
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett signaled to the world late last month that Israel would not allow Iran to acquire nuclear weapons and that the situation had reached a level where urgent action was needed.
"Iran's nuclear weapon program is at a critical point. All red lines have been crossed. Inspections - ignored. All wishful-thinking - proven false,"
Bennett said. "Iran is currently violating the IAEAs safeguard agreements - and it's getting away with it. They harass inspectors and sabotage their investigations - and they're getting away with it. They enrich Uranium to the level of 60 percent, which is only one step short of weapons-grade material - and they're getting away with it."
"Evidence which clearly proves Iran's intentions for nuclear weapons in secret sites in Turquzabad, Teheran & Marivan - is ignored,"
he continued. "Iran's nuclear program has hit a watershed moment. And so has our tolerance."
"Words do not stop centrifuges from spinning. There are those in the world who seem to view Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons as an inevitable reality, as a done deal, or they've just become tired of hearing about it,"
Bennett added. "Israel doesn't have that privilege. We cannot tire. We will not tire. Israel will not allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon."
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