Iran Nuclear NewsIran's first nuclear plant to start operations in February...

Iran’s first nuclear plant to start operations in February in latest delay

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Bloomberg: Iran’s first nuclear power plant will start operations in February, later than planned, said Ali Akbar Salehi, head of the Atomic Energy Organization.

Bloomberg

By Ladane Nasseri

Iran’s first nuclear power plant will start operations in February, later than planned, said Ali Akbar Salehi, head of the Atomic Energy Organization.

Iran aims to conduct “necessary tests” by mid-January, Salehi said yesterday, according to a report today by state-run Press TV news channel. Iran said in November that the 1,000- megawatt reactor in the country’s south would begin producing power by late January.

Iran is under international sanctions because of its nuclear program, which the U.S. and its allies say is cover for the development of atomic weapons. Iran rejects the allegation and says it needs nuclear technology to generate electricity and for other civilian purposes such as medical research.

The country began transferring fuel to the plant’s reactor area at an Aug. 21 ceremony that marked the opening of the Russian-built facility. It started loading fuel into the reactor in October. Under Iran’s agreement with Moscow-based Rosatom, the state-owned Russian company will supply uranium for the plant and remove spent fuel.

Iran, the second-largest oil producer in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, aims to build enough plants to generate 20,000 megawatts within 20 years.

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