Saudi Arabia’s minister of state for foreign affairs Adel al-Jubeir has said the kingdom reserves the right to arm itself with nuclear weapons if regional rival Iran cannot be stopped from making one.
Adel al-Jubeir’s sentiment comes after a report by United Nation’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Iranian nuclear stockpile.
IAEA last week said Iran had stockpiled low-enriched uranium 12 times more than the limit set by a nuclear accord.
Iran signed the landmark nuclear deal with China France, Germany, Russia, UK and US on July 14, 2015 dubbed Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) to curb the country’s nuclear activities in exchange for sanctions relief.
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The goal of the nuclear deal was to prevent the country from building a nuclear weapon, something Iran has insisted it does not intend to do.
The Islamic republic has been working on the use of nuclear power for decades. The nuclear deal it signed in 2015 with world powers allowed it only to keep a stockpile of 202.8kg
As of November 2nd, IAEA said Iran had a stockpile of 2,442.9kg of low-enriched uranium, up from 2,105.4kg reported on August 25.
Iran has continued to increase its stockpile of enriched uranium (key material in the development of nuclear bomb) since Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew US from JCPOA in 2018.
IAEA recent report about Iran’s nuclear stockpiles has unnerved Saudi Arabia. The kingdom is prepared to arm itself with nukes if Iran can’t be stopped from making its own nuclear weapons.
“It’s definitely an option [referring to Saudi Arabia arming itself with nukes]. Saudi Arabia has made it very clear, that it will do everything it can to protect its people and to protect its territories,” Saudi Arabia’s minister of state for foreign affairs Adel al-Jubeir told the DPA news agency