Sunday, September 8, 2013

Travel Warning U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE Bureau of Consular Affairs

Travel Warning
Bureau of Consular Affairs


March 01, 2013

The Department of State continues to warn U.S. citizens against travel to Syria and strongly recommends that U.S. citizens remaining in Syria depart immediately. This Travel Warning supersedes the Travel Warning dated August 28, 2012, to remind U.S. citizens that the security situation remains volatile and unpredictable as an armed conflict between government and anti-government armed groups continues throughout the country, with an increased risk of kidnappings, bombings, murder, and terrorism. This revision of the travel warning also serves to update contact information. 
No part of Syria should be considered immune from violence, and the potential exists throughout the country for hostile acts, including kidnappings. Indiscriminate shelling and aerial bombardment, including of densely populated urban areas across the country, have significantly increased the risk of death or serious injury. The destruction of infrastructure, housing, medical facilities, schools, power and water utilities has also exacerbated hardships inside the country. 
There is also a threat from terrorism, including groups like al-Qaida in Iraq (AQI) affiliated al-Nusrah Front. Since November 2011, al-Nusrah Front has claimed nearly 600 attacks – ranging from more than 40 suicide attacks to small arms and improvised explosive device operations – in major city centers including Damascus, Aleppo, Hamah, Dara, Homs, Idlib, and Dayr al-Zawr. Public places such as government buildings, shopping areas, and open spaces have been targeted.
Communications in Syria are difficult as phone and internet connections have become increasingly unreliable. The Department of State has received reports that U.S. citizens are experiencing difficulty and facing dangers traveling within the country and when trying to leave Syria via land borders, given the diminishing availability of commercial air travel out of Syria as fierce clashes between pro-government and opposition forces continue in the vicinity of Damascus and Aleppo airports.  
The U.S. Embassy in Damascus suspended its operations in February 2012 and therefore cannot provide protection or routine consular services to U.S. citizens in Syria. The Government of the Czech Republic, acting through its Embassy in Damascus, serves as Protecting Power for U.S. interests in Syria. The range of consular services the Czech Republic provides to U.S. citizens is extremely limited, and those services, including for U.S. passports and Consular Reports of Birth Abroad, may require significantly more processing time than at U.S. embassies or consulates outside of Syria. U.S. citizens in Syria who seek consular services should contact the U.S. Interests Section of the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Damascus at
U.S. citizens in Syria who are in need of emergency assistance in Syria, and are unable to reach the U.S. Interests Section of the Embassy of the Czech Republic or must make contact outside business hours, should contact the U.S. Embassy in Amman, Jordan:
Telephone: 962 (6) 590-6950 (Daily 2-3:30 local time)
Emergencies: 962 (6) 590-6500
If you seek information about U.S. citizens' services in Syria from the Office of Overseas Citizens' Services in Washington, please e-mail:
The Department of State urges those U.S. citizens who decide to remain in Syria despite this Travel Warning to provide their current contact information and next-of-kin information through the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at
For information on "What the Department of State Can and Can't Do in a Crisis," please visit the Bureau of Consular Affairs' Emergencies and Crisis link at Up-to-date information on security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or, for callers outside the United States and Canada, on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
For further information, U.S. citizens should consult the Department of State's Country Specific Information for Syria. Stay up to date by bookmarking our Bureau of Consular Affairs website, which contains the current Travel Warnings and Travel Alerts as well as the Worldwide Caution. Follow us on Twitter and the Bureau of Consular Affairs page on Facebook as well. You can also download our free Smart Traveler App, available through iTunes and the Android market, to have travel information at your fingertips.  


Ref ID: 10GENEVA135
Date: 2/26/2010 10:30
Origin: Mission Geneva
Classification: SECRET

1. (U) This is SFO-GVA-VIII-027.
2. (U) Meeting Date: February 09, 2010 Time: 10:00 A.M. - 12:00 P.M. Place: U.S. Mission, Geneva ------- SUMMARY -------
3. (S) A meeting, co-chaired by Mr. Elliott and Col Ilin, on proposed agreed statements was conducted at the U.S. Mission on February 9. The proposed agreed statements on converted B-1B heavy bombers, SSGNs, joint basing, Trident I, and rapid reload were discussed in detail. Addressing of agreed statements on the Leninsk Test Range in Kazakhstan and Davis-Monthan Air Force Base (AFB) was deferred until additional discussion of these matters was completed by the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and Definitions Working Groups (WG). The Russian side provided copies of agreed statements on the use of telemetric data and on the transfer of Trident II missiles to the United Kingdom. End summary.
4. (U) SUBJECT SUMMARY: Converted B-1B Heavy Bombers; U.S. SSGNs; Joint Basing; Trident I SLBMs; Rapid Reload; and Other Agreed Statements. ---------------------------- Converted B-1B heavy bomberS ----------------------------
5. (S) Mr. Elliott began the meeting with a discussion on the agreed statement for B-1B heavy bombers. The U.S. side accepted the Russian-proposed change to replace the word "all" with "the last" which conveyed the same concept i.e., that the provisions of the agreed statement applied when the last B-1B was converted. Elliott discussed using the term "formerly declared facility" instead of the terms "airbase" or "facility" because the defined term "airbase" only applied to facilities where heavy bombers equipped for nuclear armaments are based and the defined term "facility" only applied to those facilities listed in their definition. Col Ilin commented that care must be taken since the term "bases" was used elsewhere in the document and therefore must be used consistently.
6. In response to the Russian proposal that the procedures for the exhibition of the B-1B be "identical" to the procedures specified in Part III of the Protocol (Conversion or Elimination (CorE)), Section V, Paragraph 5, Elliott explained why procedures for verification of conversion of heavy bombers for use with non-nuclear armaments could not be "identical" to the procedures used during the exhibition to demonstrate that the converted B-1B was incapable of employing nuclear armaments. He said this was because the procedures specified in Part III of the Protocol required the B-1B to remain at the CorE facility following completion of conversion. It was impossible for the United States to comply with this provision since the B-1B that would be exhibited would have already undergone conversion, been inspected, and been flown to its operating base. Ilin agreed that the term "identical" may not be acceptable but that it should be agreed which of the procedures would be used and also that the "distinguishing features" covered during the exhibition must be recorded for future reference. Elliott concurred that the procedures would be similar but physically could not be "identical" as the Russian side had proposed. Elliott asked for clarification of the Russian-proposed changes in paragraph (C). Ilin explained that the Russian side may inspect only one of the two bases each year. After hearing this, Elliott accepted the Russian proposed text.
7. (S) Elliott explained that the U.S. position on proposed paragraph D(i) in the agreed statement was to capture cases of operational exemptions for Type-2 inspections of heavy bombers equipped for non-nuclear armaments at Ellsworth AFB and Dyess AFB, once they became formerly declared facilities. Dr. Warner reiterated that this concept was well documented in the Inspection Protocol, Part 5, Section VI, paragraph 3, and it would be reasonable to extend this provision to this type of facility. Ilin countered that the Inspection Protocol was not written to apply to formerly declared facilities so the Russian side did not approve of simply adjusting the Inspection Protocol language, and further added that operational exemptions might be needed at a road mobile base in the future. Warner agreed to evaluate changing the wording in the Inspection Protocol to clearly reflect this provision's application to formerly declared facilities which are still being used as operational bases.
--------- U.S. SSGN ---------
8. (S) Elliott stated the same solution discussed earlier in the meeting,regarding the nature of the conversion verification inspections, would need to be applied to the conversion inspections of SSGN launchers. The sides agreed to evaluate the use of coastlines and waters diagrams for recording the location of SSGNs at the submarine base. Warner proposed deferring the discussion to the MOU WG. Elliott proposed a compromise on the number of items to be inspected on both the SSGNs and the converted heavy bombers. He suggested the Russian side be allowed to select two SSGN launchers to verify they have not been reconverted to launch SLBMs if an SSGN was present during a Type-1 inspection at a submarine base. He also suggested that a combination of two heavy bombers equipped for nuclear armaments and two heavy bombers of the same type equipped for non-nuclear armaments be subject to inspection during a Type-1 inspection at a joint base instead of the Russian proposal of inspecting three of each. Ilin did not accept this proposal and it was agreed that the matter would be discussed at a later meeting.
------------ Joint Basing ------------
9. (S) Elliott asked for clarification of the Russian-proposed change to paragraph 1(a)(iii) of the joint basing agreed statement. Ilin explained that the proposed change was an attempt to standardize this agreed statement with procedures established in the Inspection Protocol. Elliott agreed to review the proposal and provide alternative text that more completely captured the procedures necessary to conduct this inspection. Elliott stated that the proposed text in paragraphs 1(a)(iv) and 2 were redundant and Ilin responded that they were inserted to provide clarity. The sides agreed to discuss these changes at a future meeting.
--------------- Trident i SLBMs ---------------
10. (S) With regard to the agreed statement on Trident I SLBMs, Elliott said there was no need to insert the proposed Russian text, "these SLBMs will be launched from land-based launchers" since the previous sentence already stated that the remaining Trident I SLBMs shall not be used for purposes inconsistent with the treaty. Ilin agreed to review the text and discuss the issue during the next meeting. Elliott said the Trident I launchers were used for purposes other than to launch sea-based cruise missiles, including special operations uses, so the Russian proposal to specify their use for only launching sea-based cruise missiles was incorrect. Ilin stated the uses of the launchers must be clearly defined. Elliott proposed altering the agree
ment to state that the launchers would not be used for launching SLBMs. ------------ Rapid Reload ------------
11. (S) Elliott read the U.S. proposal on rapid reload. Ilin responded that the Russian side felt the rapid reload agreed statement reflected sentiments present during the Cold War. Ilin read a new Russian version of the agreed statement which included the concept to "not keep ICBMs and SLBMs with RVs installed in loading tubes at storage facilities" and provided a copy of this proposal. Begin text of Russian-proposed statement: Document of the Russian side February 9, 2010 Agreed Statement On the prohibition of the production, testing and deployment of systems for rapid reload of ICBM and SLBM launchers The Parties agree that the production, testing and deployment of systems for the rapid reload of ICBM and SLBM launchers is unwarranted and should not be pursued by either Party. The Parties commit not to maintain ICBMs and SLBMs with warheads located on them, including those in launching tubes (containers), in storage facilities. End text.
----------------------- other Agreed statements -----------------------
12. (S) Ilin provided copies of two additional proposed agreed statements. The first was an agreed statement on the use of telemetric data. Begin text: Document of the Russian side February 9, 2010 Agreed Statement On the Use of Telemetric Information Considering that the exchange of telemetric information on missile launches of the Parties is a sensitive transparency measure, which, under specific circumstances, is capable of inflicting harm on the national security of a Party, the United States of America and the Russian Federation agree that telemetric information about ICBM and SLBM launches of the other Party, received independently or within the framework of a bilateral exchange, shall not be used for purposes related to the development, increase in capability, or modernization of missile defense systems. End text.
13. (S) The second was an agreed statement on the transfer of Tridents II SLBMs to the United Kingdom. Begin text: Document of the Russian side February 9, 2010 Agreed Statement On the movement of SLBM "Trident-II" missiles, transferred by the US to equip the Navy of Great Britain The Parties agree that, in order to increase transparency in relation to the use of "Trident-II" SLBMs, transferred by the United States of America to equip the Navy of Great Britain, the United States of America shall provide notification to the Russian Federation about the time of such transfer, as well as the unique identifier and the location of each of the transferred missiles. The Parties agree that, upon conclusion of the life cycle of "Trident-II" SLBMs transferred by the United States of America to equip the Navy of Great Britain, the United States of America will send notification to the Russian Federation about the time and method of elimination, as well as the unique identifier for each of the transferred missiles. End text.
14. (S) Ilin questioned why the sides had not discussed the proposed agreed statements concerning the Leninsk Test Range or the CorE facility at Davis-Monthan AFB and Elliott responded that the MOU WG was addressing the Leninsk issue and the agreed statement on heavy bombers at Davis-Monthan AFB may not be necessary pending resolution of the definition of "deployed" and "non-deployed" heavy bombers. He recommended the sides defer discussion on those two agreed statements for the time being.
15. (U) Documents exchanged: - Russia: -- Russian Proposal on Agreed Statement on the Movement of SLBM "Trident-II" Missiles, Transferred by the US to Equip the Navy of Great Britain, dated February 9, 2010; -- Russian Proposal on Agreed Statement on the Prohibition of the Production, Testing and Deployment of Systems for Rapid Reload of ICBM and SLBM Launchers, dated February 9, 2010; and -- Russian Proposal on Agreed Statement on the Use of Telemetric Information, dated February 5, 2010
16. (U) Participants: UNITED STATES Mr. Elliott Mr. Ahlm (RO) Mr. Albertson Mr. Brown Lt Col Comeau Lt Col Goodman LTC Litterini Amb Ries Mr. Trout Dr. Warner Mrs. Zdravecky Ms. C. Smith (Int) RUSSIA Col Ilin Mr. Koshelev Adm (Ret) Kuznetsov Mr. Luchaninov Gen Orlov Gen Poznikhir Gen Venevtsev Ms. Evarovskaya (Int) 17. (U) Gottemoeller sends. KING

WikiLeaks cables: US agrees to tell Russia Britain's nuclear secrets

WikiLeaks cables: US agrees to tell Russia Britain's nuclear secrets

The US secretly agreed to give the Russians sensitive information on Britain’s nuclear deterrent to persuade them to sign a key treaty, The Daily Telegraph can disclose.

HMS Vanguard is Britain's lead Trident-armed submarine. The US, under a nuclear deal, has agreed to give the Kremlin the serial numbers of the missiles it gives Britain  Photo: TAM MACDONALD
Information about every Trident missile the US supplies to Britain will be given to Russia as part of an arms control deal signed by President Barack Obama next week.
Defence analysts claim the agreement risks undermining Britain’s policy of refusing to confirm the exact size of its nuclear arsenal.
The fact that the Americans used British nuclear secrets as a bargaining chip also sheds new light on the so-called “special relationship”, which is shown often to be a one-sided affair by US diplomatic communications obtained by the WikiLeaks website.
Details of the behind-the-scenes talks are contained in more than 1,400 US embassy cables published to date by the Telegraph, including almost 800 sent from the London Embassy, which are published online today. The documents also show that:
• America spied on Foreign Office ministers by gathering gossip on their private lives and professional relationships.
• Intelligence-sharing arrangements with the US became strained after the controversy over Binyam Mohamed, the former Guantánamo Bay detainee who sued the Government over his alleged torture.
• David Miliband disowned the Duchess of York by saying she could not “be controlled” after she made an undercover TV documentary.
• Tens of millions of pounds of overseas aid was stolen and spent on plasma televisions and luxury goods by corrupt regimes.
A series of classified messages sent to Washington by US negotiators show how information on Britain’s nuclear capability was crucial to securing Russia’s support for the “New START” deal.
Although the treaty was not supposed to have any impact on Britain, the leaked cables show that Russia used the talks to demand more information about the UK’s Trident missiles, which are manufactured and maintained in the US.
Washington lobbied London in 2009 for permission to supply Moscow with detailed data about the performance of UK missiles. The UK refused, but the US agreed to hand over the serial numbers of Trident missiles it transfers to Britain.
Professor Malcolm Chalmers said: “This appears to be significant because while the UK has announced how many missiles it possesses, there has been no way for the Russians to verify this. Over time, the unique identifiers will provide them with another data point to gauge the size of the British arsenal.”
Duncan Lennox, editor of Jane’s Strategic Weapons Systems, said: “They want to find out whether Britain has more missiles than we say we have, and having the unique identifiers might help them.”
While the US and Russia have long permitted inspections of each other’s nuclear weapons, Britain has sought to maintain some secrecy to compensate for the relatively small size of its arsenal.
William Hague, the Foreign Secretary, last year disclosed that “up to 160” warheads are operational at any one time, but did not confirm the number of missiles.

The administrations naive hopes of persuading Iran to abandon Syria

Washington Examiner:
Iran is enduring economic sanctions designed to slow the country's nuclear weapons program, but President Obama's team thought the regime might abandon dictator Bashar Assad over his use of chemical weapons in Syria's civil war.

Samantha Power, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, hoped that a team of UN investigators — many of whom, presumably, have a longstanding relationship with Iranian leaders -- could write a report that would convince Iran to abandon its ally at the behest of the United States.

"We worked with the UN to create a group of inspectors and then worked for more than six months to get them access to the country on the logic that perhaps the presence of an investigative team in the country might deter future attacks," Power said at the Center for American Progress as she made the case for intervening in Syria.
Iran and Russia care more about the survival of their ally than the fate of the Syrian people.  Iran is fundamentally a country run by religious bigots and that rather than logic forms the basis for their decision making.  Russia wants its warm water port and is not going to let humanitarian considerations get in the way of keeping it.

It is really hard to imagine that this administration could be so lacking in intellectual talent that it would even consider such a bad idea.

The Iranian Nuclear Threat: Why it Matters

The Iranian Nuclear Threat: Why it Matters

Why is Iran's nuclear weapons program a threat to America and American interests?
Nuclear weapons in the hands of the Iranian regime will have severe repercussions for American security and the security of our allies.
  • A nuclear-armed Iran would embolden Iran's aggressive foreign policy, resulting in greater confrontations with the international community. Iran already has a conventional weapons capability to hit U.S. and allied troops stationed in the Middle East and parts of Europe. If Tehran were allowed to develop nuclear weapons, this threat would increase dramatically.
  • Iran is one of the world's leading state sponsors of terrorism through its financial and operational support for groups such as Hezbollah, Hamas, and others. Iran could potentially share its nuclear technology and know-how with extremist groups hostile to the United States and the West.
  • While Iranian missiles can't yet reach America, Iran having a nuclear weapons capability can potentially directly threaten the United States and its inhabitants. The U.S. Department of Defense reported in April 2012: "With sufficient foreign assistance, Iran may be technically capable of flight-testing an intercontinental ballistic missile by 2015.” Many analysts are also concerned about the possibility of a nuclear weapon arriving in a cargo container at a major US port. Furthermore, a federally mandated commission to study electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attacks noted the vast damage that could be wrought by a single missile with a nuclear warhead, launched from a ship off the US coast, and detonated a couple of hundred miles in the air, high above America.
  • A nuclear-armed Iran poses a threat to America's closest allies in the Middle East. Israel is most at risk as Iran's leaders have repeatedly declared that Israel should "be wiped from the map." America's moderate Arab allies, such as Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, and others are already alarmed at Iran's aggressive regional policy and would feel increasingly threatened by a nuclear-armed Iran.
  • The Middle East remains an essential source of energy for the United States and the world. Iran's military posture has led to increases in arms purchases by its neighbors. A nuclear-armed Iran would likely spark a nuclear arms race in the Middle East that would further destabilize this volatile and vital region.
How do we know Iran is developing nuclear weapons?
Iran's nuclear program is clearly intended to develop a nuclear weapons capability. For eighteen years, it was kept secret, even though international assistance would have been available to a civilian program. In 2002, Iran's covert program was exposed. Since then, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has repeatedly said that it cannot consider Iran's nuclear program as entirely civilian. On November 8, 2011 it released a report stating there is "credible" evidence that "Iran has carried out activities relevant to the development of a nuclear device." Each report since then has underscored Iran’s continuing refusal to address the IAEA’s evidence and its refusal to allow IAEA inspectors into the Parchin complex, where evidence shows “strong indicators of possible nuclear weapon development.”
In 2009, Western intelligence agencies discovered, and Iran admitted to, another secret facility that is designed for approximately 3,000 centrifuges to enrich uranium. President Obama commented that the "configuration" of the Fordow facility is "not consistent with a peaceful nuclear program." Three thousand centrifuges are sufficient for producing quantities of highly enriched uranium for nuclear weapons, but not for fuel for nuclear power plants.
What evidence does the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have?
On November 8, 2011, the IAEA released a comprehensive and damning report on Iran's nuclear program. The report is based on intelligence received from more than 10 different countries, interviews with foreign scientists who helped Iran develop their program, and the IAEA's own investigations and analyses.

In unambiguous terms, the report stated that Iran is engaged in "activities relevant to the development of a nuclear device." These activities include:
  • Research on uranium cores and detonators for nuclear weapons
  • Acquiring nuclear weapons development information and documentation from a clandestine supply network
  • Developing an indigenous nuclear weapons design and testing of the components
  • Computer modeling of nuclear explosions and logistics for nuclear testing
  • Engineering studies to adapt missiles for nuclear warheads
The IAEA's May 2013 report noted that Iran had a 182kg stockpile of 20% enriched uranium and 6,357kg of 5% enriched uranium, enough to produce weapons-grade uranium for seven nuclear bombs using the same enrichment technology. Iran continues to install centrifuges at the deep underground, heavily defended Fordow installation, increasing its capability to quickly enrich to weapons-grade.
Didn't the CIA report that Iran had stopped developing nuclear weapons?
U.S. officials have been quoted as confirming that the 2010 U.S. National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) on Iran makes clear that Iran has never stopped its nuclear weapons development program. This NIE has not been made public.
The November 2007 NIE was widely misinterpreted as claiming that Iran ended its nuclear weapons program, when in fact it had confirmed the existence of a covert Iranian program to develop nuclear weapons and missiles to deliver them. Only one element – nuclear warhead design – was estimated to have been put on hold in 2003. As then CIA director Michael Hayden has said of the 2007 NIE, "What came out in a lot of coverage was 'Iran stops nuclear program.' The only thing we claimed had been halted in '03 was the weaponization. The development of fissile material and the development of delivery systems continued. And one can make the case the development of delivery systems makes no sense with just conventional warheads on top of them."
How is the international community dealing with the Iranian nuclear program?
The major world powers have been following a two-track policy:  encouraging Iran to engage in diplomatic negotiations, while imposing increasingly comprehensive sanctions against Iran’s energy and financial sectors.  Both the United States and Israel have promoted the imposition of sanctions as well as the search for a diplomatic resolution, while warning that there will be a time limit for these policies, and that “all options” – including military action -  remain on the table.
Diplomatic Efforts: For several years, the United States, China, France, Germany, Russia, and the United Kingdom (the "P5+1") have offered to negotiate with Iran and at the same time have been incrementally increasing pressure on Iran through sanctions. Iran has met with P5+1 negotiators on several occasions in past years, but the Iranians have never engaged in serious discussions.
Sanctions: The United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted four resolutions imposing sanctions on Iran for its nuclear proliferation activities.
The U.S. has had sanctions in place for many years against companies that invest in Iran's energy sector. Recently, more stringent U.S. sanctions have been included in the National Defense Authorization Acts of 2012 and 2013, which placed sanctions on the Central Bank of Iran and foreign institutions doing business with the Central Bank of Iran. Those sanctions targeted major buyers of Iranian oil, forcing them to significantly reduce the amounts of oil they buy from Iran and to start paying for oil with goods instead of cash. The Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability and Divestment Act (CISADA) of 2010, which sanctions companies that provide refined petroleum or energy-sector technology to Iran. The U.S. Treasury has also "blacklisted" Iranian companies involved in proliferation or terrorism to make banking transactions more difficult for them globally.
Since July 2012, the European Union has banned all imports of Iranian oil. Previous sanctions from October 2010 had prevented EU-based companies from investing in Iran's energy sector or providing energy-sector technology to Iran. Major European leaders have also expressed support for additional European Union sanctions on Iran should Iran continue to demonstrate recalcitrance in meetings to discuss its nuclear program.
Though no claims of responsibility have been made, there have been reports of highly sophisticated, covert cyber-attacks against Iran's nuclear program and defense networks.
 What kind of regime governs Iran?
Since the revolution which overthrew the monarchy in 1979, Iran has been run by a Shia Islamist regime which has violently suppressed internal dissent. Both Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the country's powerful Supreme Leader, and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has been in office since 2005, are uncompromising hardliners. In June 2013, Hassan Rowhani, a cleric with views considered by some to be more moderate than those of Ahmadinejad, was elected to serve as the country’s next president.  It remains unclear what approach he will take towards the country’s nuclear program, the direction of which is largely set by the Supreme Leader.
There have been periods when it appeared that the Iranian leadership was opting for greater moderation and reform. This occurred with the election of Mohamed Khatami, considered the "reformist candidate" to the presidency in 1997. While the Khatami reign (through 2005) was marked by some moderation in Iran's public stance towards the West, the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei tightly controlled most of the state apparatus. Iran's nuclear weapons program also intensified during this period.
Violent repression: The Iran regime violently represses public manifestations of political opposition. In February 2011, regime security forces quashed demonstrations organized by opposition forces to express solidarity with political uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia. Following the dubious outcome of presidential elections in June 2009, the regime's security forces and allied militia harshly clamped down on pro-opposition protests in Tehran and elsewhere across the country. A number of people protesting the election results were killed -- some killed at rallies by gunfire, and some in prisons following their arrest.
Terrorism and extremism: Iran's regime is a source of extremism and destabilization in the region and around the globe. Iran is generally considered to be the leading state sponsor of terrorism, providing financial support and training for organizations such as Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad and others, and is believed to be behind many Shiite insurgents in Iraq. Iran is responsible for the bombings of the Israeli Embassy (1992) and the Jewish community center (1994) in Buenos Aires, Argentina, which killed over 200 people and wounded hundreds more. Its leaders have repeatedly called for Israel's demise and have propagated base anti-Semitism, including the denial of the Holocaust. The Iranian government is also backing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in his government’s brutal campaign against rebel forces and Syrian citizens. Iran supplies the Assad regime with financial and military support, and its proxy Hezbollah recently began fighting alongside the Syrian government.
Human rights violations: The Iranian regime denies basic freedoms to Iran's citizens, including freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of religion, and freedom of the press. The rights of women, workers, homosexuals, juveniles, religious and ethnic minorities, and political opposition are brutally suppressed. The United States and Sweden have proposed that the UN Human Rights Council appoint a Special Rapporteur to investigate and report on human rights violations in Iran.

Summary of the Reengagement of Detainees Formerly Held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba

Summary of the Reengagement of Detainees Formerly Held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba

Thursday, September 05, 2013
The DNI submits this summary consistent with direction in the FY2012 Intelligence Authorization Act, Section 307...

Federal Agency Data Mining Report 2012

Friday, April 12, 2013
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) provides this report pursuant to Section 804 of the Implementing the Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007, entitled The Federal Agency Data Mining Reporting Act of 2007 (Act).

2012 Report on Security Clearance Determinations

Friday, April 12, 2013
The Intelligence Authorization Act for the Fiscal Year 2010 established a requirement for the President to submit an annual report to Congress on the security clearance process, to include the total number of security clearances across government and in-depth metrics on the timeliness of security clearance determinations in the Intelligence Community (IC). In response to this requirement, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) has prepared this 2012 Report on Security Clearance Determinations...

U.S. National Intelligence - An Overview 2013 - Sponsored by the Intelligence Community Information Sharing Executive

Tuesday, April 09, 2013
This overview, sponsored by the Intelligence Community Information Sharing Executive, is designed to help people across the Government better understand and navigate the IC, leading to improved collaboration and coordination between and with the IC and with the rest of the Federal Government.

Data Mining Report

Tuesday, April 09, 2013
2012 Data Mining Report
For the period Jan. 1, 2012 through Dec. 31, 2012

Summary of the Reengagement of Detainees Formerly Held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba

Monday, March 04, 2013
The DNI submits this summary consistent with direction in the FY2012 Intelligence Authorization Act, Section 307...

Click to Download the PDF Report

ODNI overview brochure

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Summary of the Reengagement of Detainees Formerly Held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba

Wednesday, September 05, 2012
The DNI submits this summary consistent with direction in the FY2012 Intelligence Authorization Act, Section 307...

Data Mining Report

Friday, August 10, 2012
2011 Data Mining Report
For the period Jan. 1, 2011 through Dec. 31, 2011

2012 ISE Annual Report to the Congress

Tuesday, July 24, 2012
The PM-ISE proudly releases its ISE Annual Report to the Congress, which is a report required by law to provide “a progress report on the extent to which the ISE has been implemented.” Read more...
Page 2 of 12 

Report on Security Clearance Determinations

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Summary of the Reengagement of Detainees Formerly Held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba

Thursday, March 01, 2012
The DNI submits this summary consistent with direction in the FY2012 Intelligence Authorization Act, Section 307 Read more...

2012 IC Legal Reference Book

Monday, January 02, 2012

ONCIX: Foreign Spies Stealing US Economic Secrets in Cyberspace

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Report on Security Clearance Determinations for FY 2010

Monday, September 19, 2011
ODNI Report: Intelligence Community Reduces Security Clearance Processing Time Read more...

Strategic Intent for Information Sharing

Monday, August 01, 2011

National Intelligence, A Consumer's Guide

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Data Mining Report

Friday, April 01, 2011

IRTPA Title III Annual Report

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

National Security Space Strategy

Monday, January 03, 2011

Summary of the Reengagement of Detainees Formerly Held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Data Mining Report

Thursday, April 01, 2010
2009 Data Mining Report
For the Period Feb. 1, 2009 through Dec.31, 2009

Unclassified 721 Report

Monday, February 08, 2010

2009 IC Legal Reference Book

Thursday, September 24, 2009

2009 National Intelligence Strategy

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

2009 National Counterintelligence Strategy

Monday, August 10, 2009

Report on the President's Surveillance Program

Monday, July 13, 2009

National Intelligence, A Consumer's Guide

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Data Mining Report

Sunday, March 01, 2009
2008 Data Mining Report
For the period Jan. 31, 2008 through Jan. 1, 2009

An Overview of the U.S. Intelligence Community for the 111th Congress

Friday, January 16, 2009

IC Survey Results

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Global Trends 2025 Report

Thursday, November 20, 2008
ODNI's National Intelligence Council Releases Global Trends 2025 Report 

Vision 2015

Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Vision 2015 "A Globally Networked and Integrated Intelligence Enterprise"

IC Information Sharing Strategy Report

Friday, February 22, 2008

Data Mining Report

Friday, February 15, 2008

2007 IC Legal Reference Book

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

IC Survey Results

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

NIE: Iran: Nuclear Intentions and Capabilities

Monday, December 03, 2007
National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) Key Judgments "Iran: Nuclear Intentions and Capabilities"

2007 National Counterintelligence Strategy

Friday, August 10, 2007

NIE: Terrorist Threat to the US Homeland

Tuesday, July 17, 2007
National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) 2007:Terrorist Threat to the US Homeland

Overhauling Intelligence

Tuesday, June 19, 2007
DNI Mike McConnell's Foreign Affairs Article "Overhauling Intelligence"

Unclassified 721 Report

Thursday, February 08, 2007

NIE: Prospects for Iraq's Stability

Friday, February 02, 2007
National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) "Prospects for Iraq's Stability: Some Security Progress but Political Reconciliation Elusive" - Unclassified Key Judgments

An Overview of the US Intelligence Community

Monday, January 01, 2007

IC Survey Results

Wednesday, May 02, 2007
2006 IC Survey Results

2006 Annual Report of the US Intelligence Community

Monday, February 05, 2007

Privacy Guidelines for the Information Sharing Environment

Monday, December 04, 2006

IC Strategic Human Capital Plan

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

ODNI Progress Report - WMD Commission Recommendations

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Implementing IRTPA

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Unclassified 721 Report

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

IC Survey Results

Monday, May 01, 2006

National Intelligence Strategy

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Unclassified 721 Report

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Arms Control and Proliferation Profile: Iran

Arms Control and Proliferation Profile: Iran

Updated: August 2013
This profile details which major arms control agreements, regimes, initiatives, and practices that Iran subscribes to and those that it does not. It also describes the major weapons programs, policies, and holdings of Iran, as well as its proliferation record. This profile is one of a series focused on the arms control record and status of key states, all of which are available on the Arms Control Association’s Website at
Major Multilateral Arms Control Agreements and Treaties

Biological Weapons Convention
Chemical Weapons Convention
Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty
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Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT)
Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons
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Outer Space Treaty
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Ottawa Mine Ban Convention
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Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM)*
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CPPNM 2005 Amendment*
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International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism
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*Participated as observer

Export Control Regimes, Nonproliferation Initiatives, and Safeguards
Australia Group: Not a member.
Missile Technology Control Regime: Not a member.
Nuclear Suppliers Group: Not a member.
Wassenaar Arrangement: Not a member.
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Additional Protocol: Signed an additional protocol on Dec. 18, 2003. Iran submitted an initial declaration consistent with the protocol in 2004 and abided by the protocol for a brief period despite the fact that it has not entered into force. But in February 2006 Iran ended its voluntary implementation in response to adoption of an International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Board of Governors resolution referring Tehran to the UN Security Council. The IAEA and UN Security Council have since called on Iran to ratify and implement the measure.
Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism: Not a participant.
Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation: Not a participant.
Proliferation Security Initiative: Not a participant.
UN Security Council Resolution 1540: Iran has filed the requested reports on its activities to fulfill the resolution.

Major Weapons Programs, Policies, and Practices
Biological Weapons:
The United States maintains that Iran’s biotechnology infrastructure gives it the ability to produce at least small quantities of biological weapons agents for offensive purposes. According to a U.S. Central Intelligence Agency report, Iran has previously conducted offensive biological weapons agent research and development and continues to seek dual-use biotechnology, which may support legitimate biotechnology activities, an offensive biological weapons program, or both. [1] U.S. officials have accused Iran of “probably” pursuing an offensive biological weapons capability in violation of the Biological Weapons Convention. [2] Iran denies that allegation.
Chemical Weapons:
Having suffered chemical weapon attacks during its eight-year war with Iraq, Iranian officials frequently speak about the dangers such arms pose. The United States, however, has sanctioned companies for providing dual-use chemicals to Iran.  An unclassified U.S. intelligence report says that “Iran maintains the capability to produce chemical warfare agents” as well as the ability “of weaponizing [chemical weapons] agents in a variety of delivery systems.” [3] Although an option exists for states-parties to request a challenge inspection of alleged weapons sites under the terms of the Chemical Weapons Convention, no state-party, including the United States, has called for such an inspection in Iran.
  • Ballistic Missiles: Iran is the only country not in possession of nuclear weapons to have produced or flight-tested ballistic missiles with ranges exceeding 2,000 kilometers. The Iranian missile program is largely based on North Korean and Russian designs and has benefited from Chinese technical assistance. With around 1,000 short- and medium-range ballistic missiles, Iran has one of the largest deployed ballistic missile forces in the Middle East.[4] Its most sophisticated deployed ballistic missile is the liquid-fueled Shahab-3. Based on the North Korean Nodong missile, the Shahab-3 has a range of about 1,300 kilometers. Variations of the Shahab-3, including the Ghadr-1, are reported to have a range of almost 2,000 kilometers. Iran has made progress in developing and testing solid-fueled missile technologies, which could significantly increase the mobility of Iran’s missile force. Iran first tested a two-stage solid fuel-propelled missile, the Sajjil-2, which has a reported range of roughly 2,000 kilometers, in 2007. It conducted several more tests through February 2011. If Iran attempts to develop a nuclear bomb, it will most likely use the Sejjil as a delivery vehicle.[5] Recent reports, however, indicate that sanctions are preventing Iran from developing the capacity to domestically produce solid-fueled motors.  This may also account for Iran's not having recently tested the Sejjil II.[6] In addition, a 2013 report by a UN panel of experts charged with overseeing the implementation of sanctions on Iran noted that the Sejjil II has not been sighted in over a year. Iran has also developed a two-stage, liquid-fueled, space launch vehicle (SLV), the Safir. Between February 2009 and February 2012 Iran successfully launched four satellites into space using the Safir SLV. It is believed that Iran is also developing a larger space launch vehicle, the Simorgh, which has yet to be tested.  A 2009 report by the National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC) assessed that the Safir "can serve as a test bed for long-range ballistic missile technologies" and could serve as an IRBM if converted to a ballistic missile.
  • Cruise Missiles: Iran has acquired a variety of anti-ship cruise missiles, both through foreign sources and domestic production. Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko confirmed in 2005 that Iran illegally procured six Kh-55 cruise missiles from Ukraine four years earlier. The Kh-55 is an air-launched nuclear-capable cruise missile with a range of up to 3,000 kilometers. China has also provided Iran with cruise missiles and technology.  A 2011 report from the Director of National Intelligence stated that despite export control legislation, Chinese firms and individuals continued to supply Iran with missile technology.[7] Iranian made missiles include the Nasr-1, claimed to be capable of destroying warships and military targets up to 3,000 tons. Iranian officials have also announced the large scale production and deployment of short-range cruise missiles including Zafar and Qader missiles. With a range of about 300 kilometers and capable of carrying a 1,000 kg warhead, the Khalid Farzh is Iran's most advanced missile.
Nuclear Weapons:
During the latter half of 2002, the IAEA began investigating two secret Iranian nuclear facilities, a heavy-water production plant near Arak and a gas centrifuge uranium-enrichment facility near Natanz. Since that time, the agency has discovered a series of clandestine nuclear activities, some of which violated Iran’s safeguards agreement with the agency. Much of Iran’s uranium-enrichment program is based on equipment and designs acquired through former Pakistani nuclear official A.Q. Khan’s secret supply network.
After the revelations of Iran’s clandestine nuclear activities, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom launched negotiations with Iran to address international concerns about the intent and scope of its nuclear program. These negotiations collapsed in 2005. Subsequently, the IAEA Board of Governors declared Iran in noncompliance with its safeguards obligations and referred the matter to the UN Security Council. In 2006, China, Russia, and the United States joined the three European countries in diplomatic efforts to address Iran’s nuclear program. The six-country bloc is generally known as the P5+1, comprising the five permanent members of the Security Council and Germany.
Since 2006, the Security Council has adopted a number of resolutions calling on Iran to suspend its uranium enrichment-related activities and cooperate fully with the IAEA investigation. In response to Iran’s refusal to comply with these demands, the council has introduced four rounds of sanctions targeting Iranian entities and individuals believed to be involved in Iran’s proliferation-related activities.
Iran continues to expand its uranium enrichment program and has not fully disclosed the extent of its nuclear-related activities. It relies on a variant of Pakistan's P-1 centrifuge, which is known to be crash-prone and unreliable. Iran has been developing more advanced designs capable of enriching uranium three times faster, but its efforts have been hampered by sanctions that prevent Iran from importing the necessary materials that it cannot produce domestically, such as a high-quality carbon fiber. In February 2013, the IAEA reported that Iran had begun installing IR-2M centrifgues at its Fuel Enrichment Plant at Natanz. Experts assess that when operational, these machines will be 3-4 times more efficient that the IR-1 models. Other advanced centrifuges are undergoing testing. In September 2009, the revelation of Fordow, a secret nuclear facility under construction near Qom, deepened international suspicions about Iran’s uranium enrichment activities. Iran has also refused to provide the IAEA with timely design information and access to nuclear facilities and persons or discuss outstanding concerns regarding a potential military dimension to its nuclear program.
In an unclassified National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) released Dec. 3, 2007, the U.S. intelligence community concluded with “high confidence” that Iran had “halted its nuclear weapons program in 2003” and expressed “moderate confidence” that the program had not been restarted.[8] The 2007 NIE defined “nuclear weapons program” as weapons design and weaponization activities, as well as covert uranium conversion and enrichment work. Since that time, Western intelligence agencies have reportedly assessed that Iran has resumed research related to weaponization, but has still not restarted all of the weapons-related activities shelved in 2003. An update of the 2007 NIE finished in 2011 appears to have maintained many of its core conclusions. Iran has consistently rejected allegations that it is pursuing nuclear weapons.
In October of 2009, Russia, France and the United States negotiated a draft agreement with Iran to transfer a portion of Iran’s low-enriched uranium (LEU) out of the country in exchange for fuel for a rector that produces medical isotopes. Widely referred to as the fuel swap deal, the agreement fell through when Iran tried to amend the terms of the LEU transfer. During 2010 Iran scaled-up a portion of its uranium enrichment from 4 percent to 20 percent, the level required for the medical reactor fuel. An effort by Brazil and Turkey to mediate a similar arrangement in May of 2010 was met with skepticism by the United States, Russia, and France who expressed doubts over the terms of the announcement as well as its timing. The P5+1 group has continued its diplomatic efforts, meeting with Iran on four separate occasions in 2012. These negotaitions did not produce any significant agreements. The proposals from 2012 served as the basis for the 2013 talks, which took place in February and April in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Talks were supsended after no progress was made during the April meetings. For more information on the proposals, see ACA's factsheet "History of Official Proposals on the Iranian Nuclear Issue," available here.
Iran's stockpile of low enriched uranium (3.5 percent) reached almost 9,000 kilograms by May 2013, of which about 2,500 kilograms has been further enriched to 20 percent. Iran also produced 324 kilograms of 20 percent enriched uranium by this date. However, 142 kilograms were converted into a solid powder to fuel the Tehran Research Reactor, which produces medical isotopes. This reduced Iran's available stockpile of 20 percent enriched uranium to approximately 182 kilograms. Iran continues enrichment of both low enriched uranium and 20 percent enriched uranium.
In May 2011, Iran’s first nuclear power reactor at its Bushehr plant began operations. This light-water reactor does not produce weapon-grade plutonium, but its operation does raise concerns regarding Iran’s growing nuclear capabilities.
Work on Iran's heavy water reactor at Arak is also ongoing. Plauged by delays due to sanctions, Iran says that the Arak reactor will begin operations in 2014. Iran claims that the reactor will be used to produce medical isotopes, but experts say it is ill suited to that task. When operational, the Arak reactor will produce enough plutonium for 1-2 nuclear weapons every year. To be useable for weapons, however, the plutonium must be separated. Iran does not currently have a separation facility and there is no indication that it is building such a facility at this time.
In a 2011 report, the IAEA stated that Iran still refused to cooperate on oustanding issues regarding possible military dimensions of its nuclear program, saying that since 2008 Iran had not engaged the IAEA "in any substantive way on this matter." The report cited Iran's involvement in activities relevant to creating a nuclear explosive, including efforts by military entities to acquire dual-use equipment, to create "undeclared pathways" for nuclear material, to acquire weapons development information through clandestine means, and to test components for a potential nuclear weaopn design. The IAEA stated that these activites were part of a "structured programme" before 2003, and concluded that they may still be continuing. At the June 2013 meeting of the Board of Governors, Director-General Yukiya Amano said that negotiations between Iran and the IAEA over an approach to resolve these concerns had made no progress after 10 meetings since February 2012.
In June, 2012, Iranian news agencies reported the announcement of the Iranian Navy's plan to develop a nuclear-powered submarine. Experts have questioned the ability of Iran to go through with this plan, saying it lacks the technical ability to build a nuclear-powered submarine. Many assert that the plan was made simply to serve as political justification to increase uranium enrichment levels, as some nuclear submarines--such as those used by the U.S.--use as high as 97 percent enriched uranium as fuel.

Conventional Weapons Trade:
In a September 2011 arms trade report, the U.S. Congressional Research Service reported that Iranian weapons purchases have largely focused on air defense systems, presumably to protect their territory and nuclear sites from possible U.S. or Israeli air attack. In September of 2010, Russia announced that it was canceling the 2007 sale of the S-300 air defense missile systems following the introduction of the UN arms embargo.

Proliferation Record
In 2000, Iran exported rockets and several ballistic missile components to Libya. It also has been accused of violating a Security Council resolution barring arms transfers to the anti-Israel militia Hezbollah operating in Lebanon. A 2007 UN Security Council resolution bars Iran from selling conventional arms and prohibits any country from importing arms from Iran. Iran has been a major supplier of weapons to the Syrian government according to a 2012 report by a designated panel of experts to the UN Security Council. The report describes three illegal transfers that took place in the prior year, two of which were to Syria and the third to Taliban members in Afghanistan. Illegal transfers to Syria included "assault rifles, machineguns, explosives, detonators, 60mm and 120mm mortar shells and other items."

Other Arms Control and Nonproliferation Activities
Iran was one of the first states to formally call for a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East, joining with Egypt to propose the goal to the UN General Assembly in 1974.
During the 1996 Biological Weapons Convention Review Conference, Iran proposed an amendment to the convention to expressly prohibit the use of biological weapons.
Beginning in 1999, Iran sponsored a UN General Assembly resolution establishing an intermittent panel of governmental experts to consider the issue of missiles “in all its aspects.” The panel, which held three sessions in 2001-2002, 2004, and 2007-2008, has explored several topics, including missile proliferation, missile defenses, and confidence-building measures. Meanwhile, Iran has elected not to participate in the voluntary Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation, which calls upon states to provide pre-launch notifications of their missiles and to annually report on their missile holdings.
At the 2012 Conference on Disarmament, Iran said that it was not opposed to negotiations of a Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty (FMCT), but that it should not infringe on any state's right to use fissile material for peaceful purposes or naval propulsion.

1. Central Intelligence Agency, Unclassified Report to Congress on the Acquisition of Technology Relating to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Advanced Conventional Munitions, 1 January-31 December 2004,
2. Assistant Secretary of State for International Security and Nonproliferation John C. Rood’s presentation to the Sixth Biological Weapons Convention Review Conference, November 20, 2006,
3. Central Intelligence Agency, Unclassified Report to Congress on the Acquisition of Technology Relating to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Advanced Conventional Munitions
4. Department of Defense, Unclassified Report on Military Power of Iran April 2010,
5. Crail, Peter, "Progress Seen in Iranian Missile Test," Arms Control Today, June 2009,
6. International Institute for Strategic Studies "Iran sanctions halt long-range ballistic-missile development," July 2012,
7. Director of National Intelligence, Unclassified Report to Congress on the Acquisition of Technology Relating to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Advanced Conventional Munitions, 1 January Through 31 December 2011, February 2012,
8. National Intelligence Estimate, “Iran: Nuclear Intentions and Capabilities,” November 2007,