Khamenei adviser says Tehran 'capable of building nuclear bomb'

Tehran will also directly respond against Israel should its security be targeted, the report says citing the advisor.

 Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei attends a meeting via video conference with people from East Azarbaijan in Tehran, Iran, February 17, 2022.  (photo credit: Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader/West Asia News Agency/Reuters)
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei attends a meeting via video conference with people from East Azarbaijan in Tehran, Iran, February 17, 2022.
(photo credit: Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader/West Asia News Agency/Reuters)

Tehran is technically capable of making a nuclear bomb but has yet to decide whether to build it, a senior adviser to Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei told Al Jazeera's Arabic service on Sunday.

Tehran will also directly respond against Israel should its security be targeted, the report says citing the advisor.

"In a few days we were able to enrich uranium up to 60% and we can easily produce 90% enriched uranium ... Iran has the technical means to produce a nuclear bomb but there has been no decision by Iran to build one," Kamal Kharrazi said.

"In a few days we were able to enrich uranium up to 60% and we can easily produce 90% enriched uranium ... Iran has the technical means to produce a nuclear bomb but there has been no decision by Iran to build it."

Kamal Kharrazi

Background

In 2018, former US President Donald Trump ditched Tehran's 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, under which Iran curbed its uranium enrichment work, a potential pathway to nuclear weapons, in exchange for relief from economic sanctions.

About a year into Trump's "maximum pressure" policy on Iran, Tehran started violating the pact's nuclear restrictions.

 IRAN’S SUPREME LEADER Ayatollah Ali Khamenei delivers a televised speech in Tehran earlier this month.  (credit: OFFICIAL KHAMENEI WEBSITE/HANDOUT VIA REUTERS) IRAN’S SUPREME LEADER Ayatollah Ali Khamenei delivers a televised speech in Tehran earlier this month. (credit: OFFICIAL KHAMENEI WEBSITE/HANDOUT VIA REUTERS)

Iran has long denied seeking nuclear weapons, saying it is refining uranium only for civilian energy uses, and has said its breaches of the international deal are reversible if the United States lifts sanctions and rejoins the agreement.

Indirect talks between Iran and President Joe Biden's administration, which aim to bring both Washington and Tehran back into compliance with the nuclear pact, have stalled since March.

Kharrazi said Tehran would never negotiate over its missile program and regional policy, as demanded by the West and its allies in the Middle East.

Recent reports on Iran

Just recently, the US-Israel agreement on the  Jerusalem Declaration of the US-Israel Strategic Partnership includes a joint stance against Iran's nuclear program and regional aggression, stating they will utilize “all elements of national power” to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.

Last Saturday, the US and Saudi Arabia agreed on the importance of stopping Iran from "acquiring a nuclear weapon," during a visit by US President Joe Biden, a joint statement carried by the Saudi state news agency (SPA) said.