Iran quietly granted nuclear exemptions to comply with deal, report says

Iran got more nuclear exemptions than reported, a new report claims
(Image credit: Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images)

The U.S. and its five negotiating partners agreed to let Iran keep more low-enriched uranium (LEU) and other nuclear materials than agreed upon, so Iran could be in compliance with the nuclear deal by the January deadline, Reuters reports, citing an unpublished report by Washington think tank the Institute for Science and International Security. The institute's president, former U.N. weapons inspector David Albright, told Reuters "the exemptions or loopholes are happening in secret, and it appears that they favor Iran." The report, whose assertions Reuters could not verify, relies on information from several unidentified officials of governments involved in the negotiations; it is scheduled to be released on Thursday.

The exemptions were reportedly approved by the joint commission appointed to oversee the Iran nuclear deal, made up of representatives from the U.S., Russia, China, Britain, Germany, and France, plus the European Union. One official told the ISIS think tank that if those exemptions had not been granted, Iran would not have met the Jan. 16 deadline for the beginning of economic sanctions relief. Congress was informed on Jan. 16, after the exemptions had been granted, Albright said. You can read what Iran reportedly got out of the exemptions at Reuters.

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Peter Weber, The Week US

Peter has worked as a news and culture writer and editor at The Week since the site's launch in 2008. He covers politics, world affairs, religion and cultural currents. His journalism career began as a copy editor at a financial newswire and has included editorial positions at The New York Times Magazine, Facts on File, and Oregon State University.