White House national security adviser, John Bolton, said Wednesday there was “no reason” for Iran to scrap its commitments to the 2015 nuclear accord other than to seek atomic weapons.
Bolton noted that without more nuclear power plants, it made no sense for the mullah regime to stockpile additional low-enriched uranium.
Earlier this month, Iran informed signatories of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) that it no longer plans to adhere to commitments made in the accord. As part of the deal, the country had limits imposed on the quantities of uranium and heavy water it can produce, set at 300 kilograms and 130 tones, respectively.
Bolton’s remarks came during a visit to the United Arab Emirates, where he confirmed the sabotage attacks on four oil tankers in the Persian Gulf were “almost certainly [conducted] by Iran.”
“It’s clear that Iran is behind the Fujairah attack. Who else would you think would be doing it?” Bolton said at a U.S. embassy briefing regarding the May 12 attacks. “There is no doubt in anybody’s minds in Washington, we know who did this and it’s important Iran knows we know,” he added.
Bolton charged that there had been previously unknown attempts to attack the Saudi oil port of Yanbu as well. Yanbu, which was attacked in recent days in coordinated drone attacks launched by Iranian-sponsored Houthi rebels in Yemen, is the end point of the kingdom’s East-West Pipeline.
The senior U.S. official warned that, “These kinds of action[s] risk a very strong response from the United States.”
In a statement released just hours after Bolton’s remarks, Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister, Ibrahim al-Assaf, blasted Iranian “interference” in the region and demanded “firmness” over attacks on Gulf oil infrastructure ahead of three Arab emergency summits as regional tensions remain high.
“Tehran’s support for Houthi rebels in Yemen is proof of Iranian interference in other nations’ affairs and this is something that (…) Islamic countries should reject,” Assaf observed.
[Photo: Gage Skidmore / Flickr]