Iran Nuclear NewsCHRONOLGY-Iran's nuclear programme

CHRONOLGY-Iran’s nuclear programme

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Reuters: Iran’s nuclear programme will be the biggest foreign policy challenge facing Iran’s next president who will be elected on June 17. Here are some major events since the nuclear programme first came to light: August 2002 – Exiled opposition group the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) says there is a massive uranium enrichment facility at Natanz and a heavy water plant at Arak. Reuters

LONDON – Iran’s nuclear programme will be the biggest foreign policy challenge facing Iran’s next president who will be elected on June 17.

Here are some major events since the nuclear programme first came to light:

August 2002 – Exiled opposition group the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) says there is a massive uranium enrichment facility at Natanz and a heavy water plant at Arak.

December 2002 – With the help of satellite photos of Natanz and Arak, the United States accuses Iran of “across-the-board pursuit of weapons of mass destruction”.

February 2003 – International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Mohamed ElBaradei and his team inspects Natanz and Arak.

June 2003 – IAEA issues first report after the inspection, saying Tehran has failed to comply with its obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

July 2003 – Diplomats tell Reuters the IAEA has found traces of weapons-grade highly-enriched uranium (HEU) at Natanz.

September 2003 – IAEA finds weapons-grade HEU traces at a second site in Iran, the Kalaye Electric Company.

October 2003 – Iran tells French, British and German foreign ministers it will suspend all enrichment-related activities.

December 2003 – Iran signs protocol allowing snap inspections of its nuclear facilities.

March 2004 – IAEA board “deplores” Iran’s omissions of key atomic technology from its October declaration.

June 2004 – IAEA board says Iran’s cooperation with the agency was not full, timely and proactive. Satellite pictures show Iran razed a site at Lavizan in Tehran that U.S. officials say was related to atomic programme.

September 2004 – IAEA asks Iran to suspend uranium enrichment programme immediately.

November 2004 – Iran promises France, Britain and Germany to suspend all nuclear fuel processing and re-processing work.

Jan 2005 – Iran agrees to allow U.N. inspections of military site where Washington believes work linked to bomb-making.

Feb 2005 – President Mohammed Khatami says no Iranian government, present or future, will give up nuclear technology programmes, including uranium enrichment. Iran signs a nuclear fuel supply deal with Russia, opposed by the U.S., to start its first atomic power plant by 2006.

May 2005 – Iran agrees at a meeting with the European Union in Geneva to hold off on plans to restart the Isfahan uranium processing plant for two months after EU warnings that it would be referred to the U.N. Security Council. Two sides agree to meet again in late July.

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