The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) is planning to start 20% uranium enrichment in the near future, said Ali-Akbar Salehi, the organization’s chief.
Speaking in a TV interview Friday night, Salehi said his organization has submitted a letter to the International Atomic Energy Agency to inform the UN watchdog of the plan, which follows a counteractive measure passed by the Iranian Parliament.
“Based on a new law passed by the Parliament, we are intending to start the 20%-uranium enrichment in Fordow facility.”
He said the AEOI needs to change the uranium gas cylinders to embark on the new move.
The Iranian parliament approved a bill in December aimed at the lifting of sanctions after the failure of JCPOA’s European parties to fulfill commitments and in wake of the assassination of top Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh.
Meanwhile on Friday, Russia’s ambassador to the UN nuclear watchdog said that Iran has told the agency it intends to enrich uranium to up to 20% purity, a level it achieved before its 2015 deal with major powers and higher than the 4.5% it has recently been enriching up to.
“#IAEA DG reported to the (IAEA) Board of Governors … about intention of #Tehran to start enrichment op to 20%,” Russian Ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency Mikhail Ulyanov said on Twitter on Friday, referring to IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi.
Reuters news agency quoted a Vienna-based diplomat as confirming there had been an IAEA report to member states saying that but declined to elaborate.
Source: Iranian media and Reuters