Key points of the Iran nuclear deal

The deal puts Iran's nuclear weapons programme on hold for 10 years.

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Iran has agreed to constraints on its nuclear programme. The Obama administration says the deal will ensure that Tehran is at least one year away from being able to amass enough nuclear material for a bomb, for a decade. This “breakout” time will shrink thereafter.

  • Iran will remove two-thirds of its centrifuges, machines that enrich uranium; will maintain its stockpile of enriched uranium below 300kg; won’t produce enriched uranium over 3.67% purity for 15 years; and will change the design of its Arak plutonium reactor so it won’t produce weapons-grade material.
  • Iran can keep all three of its nuclear facilities in use, though it will only be able to enrich uranium in one of them. After 15 years, Iran could significantly rev up its enrichment programme.
  • Iran must allow comprehensive monitoring of its nuclear and non-nuclear facilities, including rarely granted access to its nuclear supply chain such as uranium mines and centrifuge plants, for up to 25 years.
  • The six-power group – the US, UK, Russia, China, Germany and France – will cooperate with Iran to help modernise parts of its civilian nuclear programme.
  • Once it has implemented key steps to scale back its nuclear programme, Iran will win relief from European Union, US and UN energy, financial and commercial sanctions. Implementation is expected by early 2016.
  • Iran stands to get back more than $US100 billion in oil revenue stuck overseas under US sanctions once the deal is implemented.
  • Among the steps Iran must address in coming months: Its past nuclear work that may have been aimed at gaining nuclear-weapons know-how. It is likely that some issues will remain unresolved before sanctions are lifted.
  • US non-nuclear sanctions, including on energy and financial dealings with Iran, will remain. So will UN constraints on Iran's buying and selling of arms and ballistic missiles for up to five and eight years respectively. Iran must also use a specific procurement channel to buy products that can be used in a nuclear programme.
  • If Iran cheats on the nuclear deal, there will be a relatively quick sanctions snapback mechanism in the US and the EU. However, it could take up to 65 days for UN sanctions to snap back into effect.