Early this week, CIA Director William Burns said the US does not have evidence that Iran has decided to weaponize its nuclear program.
The CIA “doesn’t see any evidence that Iran’s Supreme Leader [Ali Khamenei] has made a decision to move to weaponize,” Burns told The Wall Street Journal’s annual CEO Council, The Times of Israel reported.
Burns’ admission comes a week after the US and Iran resumed indirect negotiations in Vienna to revive the nuclear deal, known as the JCPOA. The latest round of talks concluded Friday and are expected to resume this Thursday.
On the ongoing talks, the CIA chief was quoted in the following:
Burns said Monday that “the Iranians have not been taking the negotiation seriously at this point,” before adding, “we’ll see soon enough about how serious they are.”
Israeli officials have been claiming that Iran is only trying to buy time with the negotiations as it secretly develops a nuclear bomb.
For decades now, Israel has been making similar warnings, but Iran has always insisted it does not want nuclear weapons and Israel is currently the only nuclear-armed state in the region.
US: #Iran cant have nuclear weapons while we have 1000s & let Israel have them
US: Iran must submit to inspections
US: Iran must have limits on its program
US: Iran must return to compliance
Iran: lift sanctions
US: Iran isn’t serious about deal
— Assal Rad (@AssalRad) December 3, 2021
Burns’ comments counter the Israeli claims and could be a sign that the US might be breaking from Israel on the issue. Last week, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett demanded to Secretary of State Antony Blinken that the US must “immediately” halt negotiations with Iran.