Published: Thu, November 07, 2019
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

Iran plans to ramp up uranium enrichment as early as tomorrow

Iran plans to ramp up uranium enrichment as early as tomorrow

The pact began unravelling past year when President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of the pact negotiated by his predecessor, Barack Obama.

Iran, which flatly denies seeking a nuclear bomb, has given another two-month deadline to Britain, France and Germany to salvage the deal. Iran remains reluctant to engage in talks, saying they will yield no results as Washington is prawn to easily changing its mind on any deal it had signed before.

The deal once limited Iran to using only 5,060 first-generation IR-1 centrifuges to enrich uranium by rapidly spinning uranium hexafluoride gas.

It's not clear how many centrifuges will be injected with the gas.

The announcement came on the 40th anniversary of the 1979 student takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran and the subsequent 444-day hostage crisis - which the White House called a "brazen act". On Monday, Kocijancic urged Iran "to reverse such steps without delay and to refrain from any further measures that would undermine the nuclear deal" and warned continued European Union commitment to the deal "depends on the full compliance by Iran".

The deal saw Iran agree to only produce low-enriched uranium, which has a 3-4% concentration of U-235, and can be used to produce fuel for nuclear power plants.

The former USA embassy was stormed by Iranian students on November 4, 1979, and its personnel were held hostage for 444 days.

Washington has been increasing the sanction pressure on Tehran since Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew the United States from the landmark nuclear deal with Iran last May. He says it partially depends on how many centrifuges are injected with gas.

This is the fourth step taken by Iran since July in response to United States sanctions reinstated by President Donald Trump.

Iran has given Europe a series of 60-day deadlines to reset the terms of the deal, including facilitating the sale of Iranian oil, which is blocked under the USA embargo.

Salehi earlier in the same state TV interview said that Tehran is now operating 60 IR-6 advanced centrifuges in violation of its atomic deal with world powers.

Rabiei blamed the "bullying policy" of the USA and the "lack of resistance" by the Europeans for bringing about Iran's actions.

Iran has begun to further distance itself from a 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers that curbed its atomic work, local media reported on Wednesday (local time).

The nuclear deal, under which worldwide sanctions against Iran were lifted, was tailored to extend the time Iran would need to accumulate enough fissile material for a nuclear bomb - sometimes referred to as the "breakout time" - to about a year from 2-3 months.

It was the latest action by Iran to seek tangible benefits from the deal, from which the United States withdrew as President Donald Trump imposed sweeping sanctions aimed at reducing Tehran's regional role.

The U.S. also imposed new sanctions Monday on members of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's inner circle.

"We should be able to sell our oil, we should be able to make banking transactions, and all sanctions on other sectors should be lifted", Rouhani said Tuesday.

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