Iran enhances uranium enrichment after attack on atomic complex

Iran has begun to enrich uranium to 60 percent purity. It is a response to nuclear terrorism on the part of Israel. Iran holds that country responsible for the power outages last weekend at the Natanz nuclear plant, where a number of new uranium centrifuges had just been put into operation.

โ€œ We are now making 9 grams of the 60% enriched uranium per hour,โ€ says a government official to state television. That rate will be reduced over time to 5 grams per hour, but at the same time the country will continue to produce uranium with a 20% purity.

Enriched uranium can be used for nuclear power or nuclear weapons. For nuclear energy, the uranium must be enriched at 4% or 5%. Starting at 60%, it is only a small step towards the required 90% or higher for nuclear weapons.

Calls

Iran denies that it is engaged in the production of nuclear weapons, but Iranian nuclear activities are a thorn in the eye of other countries. This week, the United Kingdom, France and Germany expressed all their โ€œgreat concernโ€ about Irans plans to increase uranium enrichment.

This week in Vienna we are talking to Iran about a new nuclear agreement. Iran hopes for relief of international sanctions in exchange for limiting the nuclear programme.

โ€œ Enhancing uranium enrichment does not make these discussions any easier,โ€ says an EU spokesman. It is not yet clear how long the talks will last. In a few days, there will be a short break so that the delegations can consult at home.