How serious could it be if the nuclear deal between Iran and the West fails? Former deputy director of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Dr. Olli Heinonen, says if Iran nixes the deal, the country could have a live nuclear weapon in 2-3 weeks.
He told Klein: “If [Iran] in reality [abrogates the deal] tomorrow, they still have quite a substantial stock of uranium hexafluoride, which is enriched to 20 percent. … And then technically, when Iran has committed to this month to certain parts of the processes in such a way these tandem cascades are not anymore connected with each other, you can indeed put them back in one day’s time.
“So if this all happens in the next, let’s say, weeks, this is really true. They can start to produce 20-percent enriched uranium,” he said. “Now, in order to go fast for Iran, it actually needs to make several such tandem cascades. Not just those in Natanz and Fordow [nuclear plants]. They have to put perhaps some 6,000 centrifuges to work in this kind of a mode.”
Continued the former IAEA director: “If they do that, which they can technically do, it will take certainly a little bit more than one night to do. But then once they have sorted it out, it would take about two, three weeks to have enough uranium hexafluoride high-enriched for one single weapon.”
Listen to the interview: