Iran on Brink of Nuclear Capability

IAEA: No weapons yet, but nation 'could move quickly'
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 7, 2011 2:36 AM CST
Updated Nov 7, 2011 7:55 AM CST
Iran on Brink of Nuclear Capability: Atomic Energy Agency
The reactor building of Iran's nuclear power plant located at Bushehr, Iran, 750 miles south of Tehran.   (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi, file)

Iran now has all the technical know-how needed to make working nuclear weapons—thanks to the technical assistance of scientists from the former Soviet Union, Pakistan, and North Korea, reports the Washington Post. Officials at the International Atomic Energy Agency, which is due to release a report on Iran later this week, say new intelligence documents confirm that Iran continued work on its nuclear weapons program after 2003, and that it has been much more organized and successful than US and other intelligence services previously thought.

“The program never really stopped,” said David Albright, a nuclear weapons expert at the Institute for Science and International Security. US officials say that Iran has not decided whether to make nuclear weapons now, but is determined to have the capability to make them quickly if needed. Iran, for its part, seems unconcerned about the coming report. "Let them publish and see what happens," said Iran’s foreign minister and former nuclear top official. However reports are circulating that Israel, the US, or other countries could be working on more sanctions or military strikes against Iran's program. (More Iran stories.)

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