Photo Credit: Mohammad Hassanzadeh
President Hassan Rouhani

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani crowed in a televised speech on Thursday that his country is galloping ahead with its nuclear development program even faster than it was prior to the signing of the 2015 JCPOA nuclear deal with world powers.

“We are enriching more uranium than before the deal was reached,” Rouhani said in his address before the 59th Iranian Central Bank General Assembly in Tehran, broadcast live on Iranian state television.

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“Pressure has increased on Iran, but we continue to progress. We have no limits on the nuclear file and we are increasing enrichment every day,” he added, according to a tweet posted by the Lebanese Al-Mayadeen television channel.

On Tuesday, Britain, France and German reluctantly triggered the dispute resolution mechanism in the JCPOA in response to Iran taking a fifth step in violating the agreement.

EU Warns Iran: Comply with JCPOA Nuclear Deal or Face Return of Sanctions

The foreign ministers of the E3, as the group is known, said in a statement they were “left with no choice, given Iran’s actions, but to register today our concerns that Iran is not meeting its commitments.” They added, however, their nations would not implement the “maximum pressure” being imposed on Iran from the United States, and said they hoped the remaining parties still involved in the JCPOA would find a way forward through the impasse to preserve the agreement.

Iran’s response to the E3 challenge, however, was not encouraging: Rouhani warned Wednesday that European troops in the Middle East “could be in danger” during a televised Cabinet meeting.

“Today, the American soldier is in danger, tomorrow the European soldier could be in danger,” Rouhani said, according to a translation by The Associated Press.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.