Iran Lawmaker Declares Tehran Has Nuclear Weapons

Iran Lawmaker Declares Tehran Has Nuclear Weapons

Following a warning from the head of the United Nations' atomic watchdog agency about Iran's uranium stockpile, an outspoken Iranian lawmaker asserted on Friday that Iran indeed possesses atomic weapons.

Ahmad Bakhshayesh Ardestani, a member of Iran's quasi-parliament, stated, "In my opinion, we have achieved nuclear weapons, but we do not announce it."

He explained that Iran's policy aligns with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), although their actual capability extends beyond this framework.

The JCPOA, commonly known as the Iran nuclear deal, offers economic sanctions relief in exchange for Iran's commitment to refrain from nuclear weapon development within a specific timeframe.

Ardestani emphasized the strategic necessity of Iran possessing nuclear weapons, especially in light of geopolitical tensions with the United States and Israel. He noted that Iran's stance is influenced by recent global conflicts, such as Russia's actions in Ukraine and Israel's engagements in Gaza.

Kamal Kharrazi, president of the Iranian Strategic Council on Foreign Relations, echoed similar sentiments, stating that Iran has the capacity to produce nuclear weapons but has not made a decision to do so yet. He hinted at a potential shift in Iran's nuclear doctrine if its interests are threatened.

Jason Brodsky, from United Against a Nuclear Iran, cautioned against taking Ardestani's and Kharrazi's remarks at face value, highlighting their positions within the Iranian regime.

Critics of the Biden administration's approach towards Iran argue that the strategy of containment has failed, allowing Iran to rapidly advance its nuclear program despite being labeled as a state sponsor of terrorism.

Concerns over Iran's nuclear program extend to Europe, with German intelligence noting ongoing procurement efforts by Iran for its nuclear and missile programs.

David Wurmser, a former adviser on nonproliferation, emphasized the urgency of addressing Iran's nuclear ambitions, warning of potential catastrophic consequences for the region and global security.

The recent statements from Iranian officials coincide with efforts by the International Atomic Energy Agency to prevent nuclear weaponization in Iran, indicating ongoing international concern over Iran's nuclear capabilities.

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