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Iran

Iran’s nuclear ambitions have been a focus of international diplomacy for decades. Faced with accusations of nuclear weapons pursuits in violation of its NPT commitments, Iran concluded a 2015 agreement, the JCPOA, to restrict its nuclear program. However, the 2018 U.S. withdrawal from the deal and subsequent Iranian violations cast doubt on the deal’s future.

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Region   Middle East and North Africa

10 kg Uranium enriched to 60% as of September 2021

84.3 kg Uranium enriched to 20% as of September 2021

2,000 km Self-imposed range limit on ballistic missiles

12.5 tons Low enriched uranium transferred from Iran to Russia under JCPOA in 2015


Nuclear

  • Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) concluded in 2015 to restrict Iran's nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief
  • Possesses complete uranium fuel cycle capabilities
  • Nuclear program and personnel are targets of sabotage and assassinations

Iran Nuclear Overview


Biological

  • Denies acquisition or production of bioweapons
  • Has sophisticated biotechnology and biopharmaceutical industries
  • Engages in dual-use activities which "raise concern" with U.S. government

Iran Biological Overview


Missile

  • Large, increasingly sophisticated ballistic missile and space launch programs
  • Initially received foreign assistance, particularly from North Korea, but today possesses indigenous capabilities
  • Supplies missiles and rockets to partner and proxy groups in Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, and Yemen

Iran Missile Overview


Chemical

  • Suffered severe losses from Iraqi chemical weapons use during the Iran-Iraq War
  • Denies ever pursuing or maintaining an offensive chemical weapons program
  • Rejects U.S. claims that Iran supplied Libya with chemical munitions in 1980's

Iran Chemical Overview

Treaties and Regimes Memberships

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NPT

The NPT is a treaty aimed at limiting the spread of nuclear weapons through the three pillars of non-proliferation, disarmament, and peaceful use of nuclear energy.

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Biological Weapons Convention (BTWC)

The BTWC mandates the elimination of existing biological weapons and prohibits developing, stockpiling, or using biological and toxin weapons.

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Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC)

The Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) requires countries to destroy all chemical weapons and prohibits developing, stockpiling, or using chemical weapons.

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Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT)

The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty bans all nuclear explosion tests on Earth. It needs eight key countries to ratify before entry into force.

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Facilities

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Imam Khomeini Space Center

  • Location Semnan, Iran
  • Type Missile-Missile Bases
  • Facility Status Operational

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Arak Nuclear Complex

  • Location Arak, Iran
  • Type Nuclear-Research Reactors
  • Facility Status Ongoing redesign to meet JCPOA and IAEA requirements

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Bushehr Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP)

  • Location Halileh, 12km south of Bushehr
  • Type Nuclear-Power Reactors
  • Facility Status 1 reactor operational, 2 new reactors planned

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Fordow Fuel Enrichment Plant

  • Location Qom, Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Base
  • Type Nuclear-Enrichment
  • Facility Status Operational as nuclear, physics and technology center under IAEA safeguards

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Natanz Enrichment Complex

  • Location Natanz, Iran
  • Type Nuclear-Enrichment
  • Facility Status Operational

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Pilot Fuel Enrichment Plant (PFEP)

  • Location Natanz Enrichment Plant
  • Type Nuclear-Enrichment
  • Facility Status Operational

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Saghand Uranium Mine

  • Location Northeast of Yazd province in central Iran desert, Kavir
  • Type Nuclear-Mining and Milling
  • Facility Status Operational

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Tehran Research Reactor (TRR)

  • Location Tehran Nuclear Research Center
  • Type Nuclear-Research Reactors
  • Facility Status Operational

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Parchin Military Complex

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Nuclear-Weaponization
  • Facility Status Operational

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Shahroud Missile Test Site

  • Location Shahroud, Tehran province
  • Type Missile-Testing
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Lashkar Ab’ad

  • Location Hashtgerd
  • Type Nuclear-Enrichment
  • Facility Status Possibly operational

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Tehran Nuclear Research Center (TNRC)

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Nuclear-Weaponization
  • Facility Status Operational

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Uranium Conversion Facility (UCF)

  • Location Isfahan (Esfahan)
  • Type Nuclear-Conversion
  • Facility Status Operational; undergoing maintenance since summer 2009

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Zirconium Production Plant (ZPP)

  • Location Isfahan (Esfahan)
  • Type Nuclear-Fuel Fabrication
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Ardakan Yellowcake Production Plant

  • Location Ardakan
  • Type Nuclear-Mining and Milling
  • Facility Status Operational

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Heavy Water Zero Power Reactor (ENTC-HWZPR)

  • Location Esfahan (Isfahan) Nuclear Technology Center (ENTC)
  • Type Nuclear-Research and Development
  • Facility Status Operational

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Bandar Abbas Uranium Production Plant (BUP)

  • Location Bandar Abbas
  • Type Nuclear-Mining and Milling
  • Facility Status Operational

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Isfahan (Esfahan) Nuclear Fuel Research and Production Center (NFRPC)

  • Location Reshandasht, south east of Isfahan (Esfahan)
  • Type Nuclear-Research and Development
  • Facility Status Operational

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Fuel Fabrication Laboratory (FFL)

  • Location Isfahan (Esfahan)
  • Type Nuclear-Fuel Fabrication
  • Facility Status Operational

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Isfahan (Esfahan) Nuclear Technology Center (INTC)

  • Location University of Isfahan
  • Type Nuclear-Research and Development
  • Facility Status Operational

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Defense Industries Organization (DIO)

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Nuclear-Enrichment
  • Facility Status Operational

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Light Water Sub-Critical Reactor (ENTC-LWSCR)

  • Location Esfahan (Isfahan) Nuclear Technology Center (INTC)
  • Type Nuclear-Research and Development
  • Facility Status Operational

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Fuel Enrichment Plant (FEP)

  • Location Natanz Enrichment Plant
  • Type Nuclear-Enrichment
  • Facility Status Partially operational

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Yazd Radiation Processing Center (YRPC)

  • Location Yazd
  • Type Nuclear-Research and Development
  • Facility Status Operational

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Heavy Water Production Plant (HWPP)

  • Location Khondab, near Arak
  • Type Nuclear-Heavy Water Production
  • Facility Status Probably Operating

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Amir Kabir University of Technology

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Nuclear-Education and Training
  • Facility Status Open

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Miniature Neutron Source Reactor (MNSR)

  • Location Isfahan Nuclear Technology Center
  • Type Nuclear-Research Reactors
  • Facility Status Operational

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Imam Hussein University (IHU)

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Nuclear-Education and Training
  • Facility Status Open

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Anarak Waste Storage Facility

  • Location Anarak
  • Type Nuclear-Waste Management
  • Facility Status Operational

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Institute for Studies in Theoretical Physics and Mathematics (IPM)

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Nuclear-Education and Training
  • Facility Status Open

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Qom Waste Disposal Site

  • Location Qom
  • Type Nuclear-Waste Management
  • Facility Status Operational

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Bonab Atomic Energy Research Center

  • Location Bonab
  • Type Nuclear-Research and Development
  • Facility Status Operational

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Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI)

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Nuclear-Regulatory
  • Facility Status Operational

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Graphite Sub-Critical Reactor (ENTC GSCR)

  • Location Esfahan (Isfahan) Nuclear Technology Center (ENTC)
  • Type Nuclear-Research and Development
  • Facility Status Operational

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Shiraz Missile Plant

  • Location Shiraz, Fars
  • Type Missile-Production
  • Facility Status Operational

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Shahid Hemmat Industrial Group

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Missile-Production
  • Facility Status Operational

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Shahid Bakeri Industrial Group

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Missile-Production
  • Facility Status Operational

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Fajr Industrial Group

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Missile-Production
  • Facility Status Operational

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Isfahan Missile Complex

  • Location Isfahan
  • Type Missile-Production
  • Facility Status Operational

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Bank Sepah

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Missile-Production
  • Facility Status Operational

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Ministry of Defense and Armed Forces Logistics (MODAFL)

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Missile-Regulatory
  • Facility Status Operational

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Imam Ali Missile Base

  • Location Khorramabad, Lorestan
  • Type Missile-Missile Bases
  • Facility Status Operational

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Defense Industries Organization (DIO)

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Missile-Regulatory
  • Facility Status Operational

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Tabriz Missile Base

  • Location Tabriz
  • Type Missile-Missile Bases
  • Facility Status Operational

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Aerospace Industries Organization (AIO)

  • Location Tehran
  • Type Missile-Regulatory
  • Facility Status Operational

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Bakhtaran Missile Base

  • Location Kermanshah
  • Type Missile-Missile Bases
  • Facility Status Operational

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Parchin Military Complex

  • Location Parchin
  • Type Missile-Production
  • Facility Status Operational

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Bandar Abbas

  • Location Bandar Abbas, Hormozgan
  • Type Missile-Missile Bases
  • Facility Status Operational

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Semnan Missile Complex

  • Location Semnan
  • Type Missile-Production
  • Facility Status Operational

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Analysis

Iran


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Education Center

Extensive resources on nuclear policy, biological threats, radiological security, cyber threats and more.

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Sources

Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS), “Iran’s Nuclear Program: 1950s and 60s: Atoms for Peace,” isis-online.org

Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS), “Iran’s Nuclear Fuel Cycle,” isisnucleariran.org

Judith Perera, “Iran’s Nuclear Industry,” Middle East and North Africa, January 2006.

S. Department of State, “Secretary of State’s Confirmation of IAEA Verification,” www.state.gov.

Francois Murphy, “Iran almost ready to start enriching uranium to 60% purity – IAEA,” Reuters, 14 April 2021, reuters.com.

S. Department of State, “Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action,” https://2009-2017.state.gov/e/eb/tfs/spi/iran/jcpoa/index.htm

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