US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Tuesday he could not confirm a report that Iran slowed its pace of amassing near-weapons-grade enriched uranium but would welcome any Iranian steps to de-escalate its “growing nuclear threat.”
Blinken also told reporters that Iran moving U.S. detainees into house arrest was not related to any other aspect of U.S. policy toward Iran, which he said reflected a strategy of deterrence, pressure and diplomacy.
On Thursday, sources said Iran may free five detained U.S. citizens as part of a deal to unfreeze $6 billion in Iranian funds in South Korea. Iran allowed four detained U.S. citizens to move into house arrest from prison. A fifth was already under home confinement.
The Wall Street Journal on Friday reported Iran had significantly slowed the pace at which it was accumulating near-weapons-grade enriched uranium and diluted some of its stockpile, moves that could help ease tensions with the U.S. and revive broader talks over Iran’s nuclear program.