|Iran installing new generation of centrifuges at Natanz||
TEHRAN – Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Director Fereydoun Abbasi confirmed on Wednesday that Iran started installing a new generation of centrifuges at the Natanz uranium enrichment facility last month.
The first cascade of the new generation of centrifuges was unveiled in February 2012, and after that the pilot project was completed, Abbasi said, adding, “From last month, the installation of the new generation of machines started at the Shahid Ahmadi-Roshan complex (Natanz), and we have produced and are installing the machines gradually as we have planned in order to complete the tests related to the new generation.”
He also expressed hope that Iran would build a specialized plant to produce the new generation of centrifuges in the coming years because the new machines are more efficient at enriching uranium to a purity level of less than five percent.
Commenting on a new round of talks between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) over the country’s nuclear program, which opened on Wednesday, the AEOI director said, “The situation has changed, and they act more sensibly during the talks, and we hope that they will deal with the issues logically and recognize the Iranian nation’s rights.”
On the IAEA’s request to be granted access to the Parchin military site, which is located southeast of Tehran, Abbasi said that Parchin was not a nuclear site, adding that they had questions about the Parchin site and Iran was holding discussions with them to clear up ambiguities.
“They must provide the required evidence for their claims about Parchin… We have repeatedly told them if they have any evidence, they should provide us with that, but they have refused,” he said.
In addition, he said, “At present, the Parchin site or any other site is not a subject for discussion, and we are holding talks and hope to agree on a logical framework.”
The UN nuclear agency and Iran have so far failed to agree a framework deal to resume an IAEA investigation into Iran’s nuclear program.
The IAEA has called on Iran to sign and implement a structured approach document to resolve the outstanding issues and has stated that gaining access to the Parchin site is a priority for the UN nuclear watchdog.
Tehran rejected requests by IAEA delegations to inspect the Parchin site during their visits to Iran in January and February 2012 and has made it clear that access to the site would not be possible before an agreement is reached on the structured approach document.
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