Iran begins fourth step in moving away from the nuclear deal
Iran has increased its nuclear activity in the underground Fordo nuclear plant.
Iranian state-TV announced that Iran has begun injecting (uranium) gas into centrifuges in Fordo nuclear plant with the presence of agents from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
Behrouz Kamalvandi, the spokesperson for Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization announced on Wednesday: “Today, a container carrying 2000 kg of UF6 Uranium Hexafluoride gas was transferred from Natanz enrichment plant to Fordo nuclear plant and the transfer was done under the supervision of IAEA agents.”
He explained that with the beginning of gas injection in Fordo, the plant will enrich uranium at 4.5 percent purity.
Kamalvandi added: “At 12midnight gas will be injected into centrifuges in Fordo nuclear plant and it will take a few hours to become stable. On Sunday we will reach the 4.5 percent enrichment level.”
The spokesperson for the IAEA announced that their agents are present at the site and will report any activity to the agency.
In its first response to the news, France announced that the move shows for the first time that Tehran explicitly planned to quit a deal with world powers that curbed its disputed nuclear work.
Yesterday, President Rouhani announced the decision to start the fourth step in reducing commitments to the nuclear deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). Russia, France, and the EU had warned Iran against the decision to take the fourth step.
President Rouhani tweeted on Wednesday: “Iran’s 4th step in reducing its commitments under the JCPOA by injecting gas to 1044 centrifuges begins today. Thanks to US policy and its allies, Fordow will soon be back to full operation.”