Iran halted work toward a nuclear weapon in 2003 and is unlikely
to be able to produce enough enriched uranium for a bomb until 2010
to 2015, according to a new U.S. intelligence report.
A declassified summary of the latest National Intelligence
Estimate that came out Monday, found with "high confidence" that
the Iran stopped an effort to develop nuclear weapons in the fall
The estimate is less severe than a 2005 report that judged the
Iranian leadership was "determined to develop nuclear weapons
despite its international obligations and international
But the latest report also said Iran could reverse that decision
and eventually produce a nuclear weapon if it wants to do so.
Nevertheless, it suggested that a combination of "threats of
intensified international scrutiny and pressures, along with
opportunities for Iran to achieve its security, prestige and goals
for regional influence in other ways," could persuade the Iranian
leadership to continue its suspension of nuclear weapons
The report came amid widespread reports that the Bush
administration is attempting to maneuver the United States into a
conflict with Iran.
The United States has long accused Iran of secretly developing
nuclear weapons, but Iran has insisted its nuclear program is
strictly aimed at producing electricity.
(Xinhua News Agency December 4, 2007)