Iran has begun enriching uranium to 60 percent at the Fordo nuclear facility


Update: 22.11.2022 20:02

Tehran – Iran has started production of uranium enriched to 60 percent in the Fordo underground nuclear plant. This was reported today by the state media, according to which the step is a response to the resolution of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). She confirmed the information today. The IAEA is demanding greater cooperation from Tehran. Britain, France and Germany today condemned the expansion of Iran’s nuclear program in a joint statement.

Iran has begun producing highly enriched uranium, up to 60 percent. It uses the existing two IR-6 type centrifuge cascades in the Fordo facility.

Iran is already enriching uranium to 60 percent in an underground complex near the city of Natanz. To produce a nuclear weapon, uranium enriched to values ​​of around 90 percent is needed. But experts have warned in recent months that Iran now has enough uranium enriched to 60 percent to make fuel for at least one nuclear bomb. Tehran maintains that its nuclear program is solely for peaceful purposes.

“In a letter, Iran informed the IAEA that it has begun enriching uranium to 60 percent at the Fordo site,” Iran’s ISNA news agency said, saying it was a “strong reaction” to the agency’s latest resolution.

The IAEA confirmed today that Iran has begun producing highly enriched uranium, up to 60 percent, using the existing two IR-6 centrifuge cascades at the Fordo facility. In addition, the nuclear agency said Iran was planning to further expand enrichment at Fordo and Natanz. “Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi said today that Iran has started producing highly enriched uranium – UF6 (uranium hexafluoride) up to 60 percent – using the existing two cascades at the Fordo uranium enrichment plant – in addition to similar production taking place from April 2021 in Natanz,” the IAEA said in a statement today.

The IAEA has announced that it is going to increase the frequency and intensity of its verification activities at Ford. The agency also said Iran plans to significantly increase production of low-enriched uranium – up to five or up to 20 percent – at Ford by installing 14 more cascades of advanced IR-6 centrifuges. According to the IAEA, Tehran is also continuing to develop enrichment activities at an underground facility in Natanz, where it is now preparing to build a second production building capable of housing over 100 cascades of centrifuges.

Britain, France and Germany today jointly condemned Iran’s plans to expand uranium enrichment at its two facilities. “Iran’s move is a challenge to the global non-proliferation system,” the three countries said in a joint statement. According to them, the move has no credible civilian justification, but carries with it significant risks related to the proliferation of nuclear weapons. “Together with international partners, we will continue to consult on how best to respond to Iran’s continued nuclear escalation,” added the trio of European powers.

A few days ago, the IAEA Board of Governors approved a resolution in which Iran calls for greater cooperation with this UN watchdog. According to the document, Iran should explain the presence of traces of uranium at workplaces where it should not have been. Iran’s Foreign Ministry dismissed the resolution as “politically motivated” on Monday.

Tehran will also build a new set of centrifuges at the Fordo facility and an underground complex near the city of Natanz, according to media reports. The IAEA said in June that Tehran was further escalating uranium enrichment and preparing to use advanced IR-6 centrifuges at the underground Fordo nuclear facility.

Iran enriches uranium to 20 percent in most of its nuclear operations, but by doing so it violates the international agreement on its nuclear program, which allows it to enrich only up to 3.67 percent.

In 2015, Iran signed a deal with world powers that included easing sanctions against Iran in exchange for curbs on Tehran’s nuclear ambitions and guarantees that Iran would not develop nuclear weapons. However, US President Donald Trump withdrew from the agreement in 2018 and renewed sanctions against Iran. Iran then began to violate the agreement. Negotiations on the renewal of the agreement are stagnating.


Source: České noviny – hlavní události by www.ceskenoviny.cz.

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