Iran Nuclear NewsIran says resumption of some nuclear work imminent

Iran says resumption of some nuclear work imminent

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Reuters: Iran shrugged off U.S. and EU warnings that it could be hauled before the U.N. Security Council and confirmed on Tuesday it would resume some sensitive nuclear work very soon. “The decision to resume some activities has been taken and now we are discussing the timing for resuming. But this decision is imminent as well,” Mohammad Saeedi, deputy head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organisation, told Reuters. Reuters

By Parisa Hafezi

TEHRAN – Iran shrugged off U.S. and EU warnings that it could be hauled before the U.N. Security Council and confirmed on Tuesday it would resume some sensitive nuclear work very soon.

“The decision to resume some activities has been taken and now we are discussing the timing for resuming. But this decision is imminent as well,” Mohammad Saeedi, deputy head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organisation, told Reuters.

Asked if Iran, which denies seeking nuclear arms, would re-start machinery currently under U.N. seals immediately after the decision was taken, he said: “Yes”.

EU officials urged Iran on Tuesday not to resume any nuclear activities which it agreed to freeze in a November agreement in Paris with Britain, France and Germany.

Since then, Iran and the EU trio have held several rounds of talks aimed at reaching a mutually acceptable long-term arrangement for Iran’s nuclear programme.

“The Paris agreement is based on one fundamental point — that the suspension remains in place,” said a British government official in London.

“There are very clear consequences and Iran knows the implications. The follow-on implication is a referral to the U.N. Security Council,” he added.

Asked if Iran was prepared to see its case sent to the Security Council, which could impose economic sanctions on Tehran, another senior Iranian official told Reuters: “Iran is not prepared to see its rights violated.”

Saeedi said work would resume at the Isfahan Uranium Conversion Facility in central Iran.

This plant converts raw uranium into a gas which can be used for uranium enrichment. No uranium enrichment facilities are located at Isfahan itself.

Iranian officials have said Tehran will not yet resume enrichment, a process which can produce bomb-grade material.

Saeedi said Iran’s decision to resume some nuclear work was because it felt the EU trio were wasting time over the nuclear negotiations.

“If Europe’s stance doesn’t change, resuming our activities now or in three months time makes no difference,” he said.

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