IAEA Board of Governors Meeting, Agenda Item 4: Verification and Monitoring in Iran in light of UN Security Council Resolution 2231
U.S. statement as delivered by Deputy Chief of Mission Louis L. Bono
Vienna, Austria, March 8, 2022
Good afternoon, Mr. Chair,
The United States extends its appreciation for the Director General’s March 3 report on JCPOA verification and monitoring in Iran. We appreciate the extensive efforts and continued dedication and professionalism of the Director General, the Deputy Director General for Safeguards, and their staff in carrying out the Agency’s critical verification mandate in Iran. The DG’s thorough, factual, and timely reporting on these matters remains essential for assuring the international community that Iran’s nuclear program is and remains exclusively peaceful.
As the DG’s report makes clear, while negotiations continue toward a mutual return to full implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iran also continues to expand its nuclear activities, including by installing additional enrichment capacity, deploying advanced centrifuges, and accumulating enriched uranium far beyond JCPOA limits. Mr. Chair, as our colleagues have just stressed, these ongoing activities, like the production of highly enriched uranium up to 60%, have no credible peaceful purpose.
Despite Iran’s escalations, Mr. Chair, there is some but very little time remaining for steadfast diplomacy to put us on the collective path to a mutual return to full implementation of the JCPOA, a vital instrument in addressing the international community’s longstanding concerns with Iran’s nuclear program. Should these negotiations succeed, such a return would be a significant achievement of international diplomacy and mark a new era in our approach to Iran’s nuclear program.
IAEA verification and monitoring is the foundation on which a return to full implementation of the JCPOA must be built. In this regard, the United States commends the Director General and his team for their continued efforts to engage Tehran on JCPOA-related verification and monitoring issues, as well as on the urgent and outstanding safeguards issues to be addressed later in the agenda.
The DG has reported his continued understanding that surveillance data from all JCPOA-related monitoring and transparency measures will continue to be stored and made available to the Agency if and when Iran resumes implementation of its nuclear-related commitments under the JCPOA. To establish a baseline and enable the Agency to fulfill its monitoring and verification mandate under the JCPOA, it is essential that Iran provide the IAEA all declarations, data, and access identified by the Agency, including all monitoring data from previous periods.
We have long highlighted the importance of ensuring adequate resources in support of the IAEA’s essential verification and monitoring role in Iran. We welcome the continued contributions of financial support for these important efforts and were pleased to announce earlier U.S. contributions helping to ensure requisite funding into 2022 and beyond. A mutual return to JCPOA implementation would lead to expanded work for the Agency in resuming the necessary verification and monitoring of Iran’s nuclear-related commitments under the deal. We fully appreciate the financial demands of these increased responsibilities and will continue to join other Member States in ensuring the IAEA continues to have the necessary resources for this important mission.
With these comments, the United States takes note of the DG’s report contained in document GOV/2022/4, as well as the DG’s interim report contained in GOV/INF/2021 document 47. We request that these reports be made public, consistent with longstanding practice, so there may be a clear understanding of the facts reported by the Director General.
Thank you, Mr. Chair.