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nuclear options

Iran ramps up nuclear production capabilities as nuclear deal falls apart

Iran told the U.N. on Tuesday that it had finished construction on a nuclear centrifuge assembly site, The New York Times reports.

It's Iran's first step toward increasing its nuclear enrichment capacity. The move could signal an end to the country's compliance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, colloquially known as the Iran deal.

In 2015, Iran, the U.S., and several other countries agreed to the JCPOA, which limits Iran's enrichment level to 5 percent, per the Times. For now, Iran said it'll stick to those terms. But if the JCPOA collapses, the head of Iran's atomic agency told BBC that the country will likely break those limits.

President Trump pulled the U.S. out of the JCPOA in April, taking a lot of the deal's bite with it. Iran didn't specify whether this new site will start producing centrifuges now, per the Times, but it does show that Iran has nuclear options if remaining dealmakers can't hold the agreement together.