Iran restarts its uranium enrichment work at the Fordow plant

Bandera de Irán en Viena

Flag of Iran in Vienna – REUTERS / HEINZ-PETER BADER – Archive


The Iranian authorities confirmed on Thursday the restart of their uranium enrichment work at the Fordow plant after injecting gas into the centrifuges, after “the preparations have been completed successfully.”

Iran restarts its uranium enrichment work at the Fordow plant
Iran restarts its uranium enrichment work at the Fordow plant

The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (OEAI) has indicated that the restart of work has taken place shortly after midnight and has added that “all measures have been carried out under the supervision of the International Energy Agency Atomic (AIEA), as reported by the Iranian news agency Tasnim.

The authorities began to inject gas into the Fordow centrifuges early Wednesday, a decision taken in the context of the progressive abandonment of the commitments contemplated in the nuclear agreement signed in 2015 with the 5 + 1 group (Russia, United States, China , France, United Kingdom and Germany).

The 2015 nuclear agreement prohibits the use of nuclear material in Fordow and, with the injection of uranium gas into its centrifuges, the plant will abandon its status as a research center to become an active nuclear facility.

The Islamic Republic agreed in 2015 to convert Fordow into a “nuclear, physical and technology center” in which 1,044 centrifuges would be used for purposes other than enrichment, such as the stable production of isotopes, which have a wide variety of civil uses.

In 2018, the president of the United States, Donald Trump, decided that his country should abandon the nuclear agreement signed in July 2015 and reactivated the sanctions against Tehran, especially against the oil sector.

After the United States left, the Islamic Republic called on the rest of the signatory countries to focus their efforts on ensuring compliance with the pact in relation to trade relations with Iran and subsequently announced that it would abandon the nuclear commitments envisaged in the pact.

The nuclear agreement established that the level of purity to which Iran could enrich uranium would be a maximum of 3.67 percent, a percentage suitable for the production of energy for civil uses and moving away from the 90 percent needed to manufacture nuclear weapons. Iran denies that it is developing nuclear weapons.

On Monday, the Islamic Republic reported that it has accelerated uranium enrichment by doubling the number of advanced IR-6 centrifuges that it has in operation, in addition to noting that it is working on a prototype called IR-9, which “works 50 times faster than the IR-1 “centrifuges.

The nuclear agreement, which involves the withdrawal of sanctions against Iran, was designed to increase the period of time that the Islamic Republic would need to accumulate enough fissile material to manufacture a nuclear bomb, going from two to three months to about a year by the restrictions to its atomic program.

Iran, which continues to deny that it will manufacture nuclear bombs, has given another two months to the United Kingdom, France and Germany to maintain the agreement. Tehran has said it is open to dialogue if Washington withdraws all sanctions and re-enters the pact.

In this regard, he has insisted at all times that these breaches are contemplated by the 2015 agreement in case some of the parties cease to maintain their commitments and stressed that they are “reversible” in case there is a response to their demands .

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