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Foster Statement on the Implementation of the Iran Nuclear Agreement

Jan 16, 2016
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Bill Foster (IL-11) released the following statement as “Implementation Day” of the Iran nuclear agreement is acknowledged:

“The announcement from the International Atomic Energy Agency that Iran has fulfilled its initial commitments outlined in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action is a major victory in the effort to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran. Under the historic agreement, Iran has reduced its stockpile of low-enriched uranium to below 300kg, decommissioned more than 12,000 uranium enrichment centrifuges, and destroyed the capability of the heavy water reactor at Arak to be used to produce large quantities of Plutonium.

“As the only Ph.D. scientist in Congress, I have felt a special obligation to be fully engaged in the Congressional oversight process of the nuclear agreement with Iran. Through more than a dozen individual classified briefings by the technical experts who supported the negotiating team, I have concluded that this agreement is our best chance at preventing Iran from developing or acquiring a nuclear weapon. 

“This is not the end, but just the beginning of our work. Continued vigilance and adequate funding for the IAEA will be essential. As we look to the future, we must continue to work with our partners and allies in the region to ensure that Iran and the international community are bound by much stronger and more verifiable nonproliferation agreements.”

“I would like to specifically congratulate the scientists at the Department of Energy National Laboratories, including those at Argonne National Laboratory in my district, for their crucial role in providing technical support for the negotiating team to ensure that this agreement is enforceable and technically sound.”

For more than twenty years, Foster was a high-energy physicist and particle accelerator designer at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory. Foster was a member of the team that discovered the top quark, the heaviest known form of matter. He also led the teams that designed and built several scientific facilities and detectors still in use today, including the Antiproton Recycler Ring, the latest of Fermilab's giant particle accelerators.