News Briefs

April 6, 2022
The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) announced it had completed the first step of its agreement with the IAEA to resolve outstanding issues relating to three nuclear sites. Tehran sent the IAEA a document on March 20 with its explanation for the presence of nuclear material at the sites. The Agency will review the document and submit follow-up questions before issuing a final report by June. AEOI head Mohammad Eslami claimed that one radioactive particle detected by the IAEA does not exist in Iran, and blamed Israel for "sowing doubts" about Iran's nuclear program.
-- Associated Press
April 6, 2022
Iran has moved machinery for manufacturing centrifuge components from the TESA Karaj plant to Natanz. The IAEA verified that the machines remained under seal and nonoperational. Iran had earlier established a new facility in Isfahan to take over centrifuge part production from the Karaj plant, which was closed in January. 
-- Reuters
April 5, 2022
The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and its allies have replaced Russian forces that withdrew from the second-largest arms and ammunition depot in Syria, located east of the city of Homs. Lebanese Hizballah and the Syrian Army's Fourth Division, led by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's brother Maher, deployed to the Mahin depot alongside the IRGC. Approximately 40 military vehicles were seen moving into the area.
-- Asharq Al-Awsat
April 1, 2022
The major factions in Yemen's civil war have agreed to a country-wide ceasefire for the first time since 2016. The agreement between the Saudi Arabian-led coalition and the Houthis will last for two months and facilitate fuel imports into Houthi-controlled areas. It also allows for some flights to leave Sana'a airport. The parties also agreed to discuss a prisoner swap and opening roads that have become impassable due to fighting. United Nations mediators helped broker the truce.
-- Reuters
March 29, 2022
The U.S. State Department granted Iraq a new 120-day sanctions waiver to import electricity from Iran. Iraq has received waivers since the United States re-imposed sanctions targeting Iran's energy exports in 2018. According to Western and Iraqi sources, Washington allows Iraq to pay Iran through a Swiss bank account.
-- Rudaw
March 18, 2022
According to a confidential International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report, Iran has taken the first step in converting 2.1 kilograms of its 60%-enriched uranium into a form used for medicine. The isotope that will result once the process is completed, molybdenum-99, cannot be processed further into nuclear fuel. Iranian media outlet Mehr News publicly reported the conversion. The IAEA estimated Iran's stockpile of 60%-enriched uranium to be 33.2 kilograms as of February 19.
-- Associated Press
March 16, 2022
An Iranian missile strike on a residential compound in northern Iraq was meant to retaliate against an Israeli airstrike on an Iranian drone factory in February, according to unnamed intelligence officials. Israel reportedly sent six "suicide drones" to detonate on the Iranian military's main drone manufacturing facility in Kermanshah, Iran. The attack destroyed dozens of Iranian drones, according to the officials. Iranian officials have said that the Kermanshah facility is an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) base. Iran has not publicly stated that its missile strike on Erbil was linked to the Kermanshah attack.
-- The New York Times
March 14, 2022
Iranian military officials claimed that they prevented a sabotage at the Fordow uranium enrichment facility on March 14. Iranian state media claimed that a network of Iranian agents had been recruited by Israeli intelligence to carry out the operation. According to the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency, the plot was thwarted by the Revolutionary Guards Nuclear Command, a new unit established to oversee security at nuclear sites.
-- Reuters
March 14, 2022
The Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) carried out a missile strike on a residential compound in Erbil, Iraq on March 13, claiming that it was a base of operations for Israeli intelligence. The strike consisted of a dozen ballistic missiles and its main target was located near the U.S. consulate in Erbil. There were no U.S. casualties. The U.S. and Iraqi governments both condemned the attack as a violation of Iraq's sovereignty.
-- CBS/AFP
March 10, 2022
Court documents unsealed in early March revealed that the United States seized the cargo of two oil tankers suspected of transporting Iranian oil. The tankers had traveled a roundabout route for over a year between Iran, Turkey, Romania, and Cyprus before being ordered by U.S. authorities in late 2021 and early 2022 to Texas and the Bahamas, where their respective cargoes were seized. During the journey, one vessel had repainted its deck to evade identification by satellite. The vessels also falsified documentation about the origin of the oil, turned off their transponders, and engaged in a ship-to-ship transfer. Both tankers, one Panama-flagged and the other Liberia-flagged, were managed by shipping companies based in Greece.
-- Associated Press

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