Israel Concerned Iran Will Begin Enriching Uranium to Near Weapons-Grade Purity


This satellite photo from Planet Labs PBC shows Iran’s Natanz nuclear site near Natanz, Iran, on April 14. (Planet Labs PBC via AP)

Israel estimated this week that Iran might begin enriching uranium to 84% purity level, which is just shy of bomb-grade, according to a report in Yisrael Hayom.

Several weeks ago, Tehran made a sudden jump to 84%, only to later claim it made a mistake and return to the original 63% purity level.

Out of fear that this might happen again, Israel’s top political and security brass – Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi, and other high-ranking military officials – held several meetings this week to discuss the implications of the development and warned Tehran against the move.

The officials made it clear that Israel was prepared to use its military power if it believed the circumstances warranted it.

Speaking to Al Jazeera, an unnamed Iranian official responded to the Israeli threat, saying that any damage inflicted on the regime’s nuclear facilities would be tantamount “to declaring a widespread war for which Israel will bear responsibility.”

He also accused Israel of trying to project strength while going through an internal crisis, perhaps alluding to the judicial reform that has become a source of contention in Israeli society.

He said that Israel’s alleged increased strikes in Syria prove that the country is “the basis of insecurity and stability in the region. The world must understand that there will be no red lines in our response against Israel. Israel’s words are official terrorism, which is met with international silence.”

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