Iran’s currency sank to a new low of 500,000 to the dollar on Monday on news that the US and EU are considering a new round of sanctions on the Islamic Republic, Al-Jazeera reports. Just five years ago the rial was trading at 40,000 to the dollar, before the US abandoned the 2015 nuclear deal and reimposed harsh sanctions.
The continued collapse of the rial follows news on Sunday that the International Atomic Energy Agency found Iranian uranium enriched to 84% purity–the closest Iran has ever come to weapons-grade 90% enrichment. Iran’s civilian nuclear program spokesman denied the report, claiming that the highly enriched uranium was a limited and temporary byproduct of material intended for civilian use, although sources close to the government later acknowledged it.
Iran’s violation of nuclear inspection and enrichment agreements—and its military support of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine—are major roadblocks to renegotiating the 2015 nuclear deal and getting sanctions lifted.