“There’s no reason for them to do any of that unless that’s part of an effort to reduce the breakout time to produce nuclear weapons,” Bolton said. “That’s a very serious issue if they continue to do that.”
Iran previously announced it was backing away from the 2015 nuclear deal, which saw it limit its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions. Trump withdrew the US from the accord saying it didn’t go far enough in limiting the Iranian nuclear program, nor did it address Iran’s ballistic missile program.
He warned the US would strike back if attacked.
“The point is to make it very clear to Iran and its surrogates that these kinds of action risk a very strong response from the United States,” Bolton threatened, without elaborating.
Saudi officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment about Bolton’s claim on Yanbu, which is the terminus, or end point, of the kingdom’s East-West Pipeline. That pipeline was attacked in recent days in a coordinated drone assault launched by Yemen’s Iranian-backed Houthi rebels.