Teheran’s Plan on Setup of New Centrifuges to Harm Cooperation with IAEA

Azerbaijan, Baku, 11 April / Trend corr D. Khatinoglu, Gasimova/ While IAEA does not have concrete information about the Iranian nuclear program and the cooperation is also strained, Teheran's plans on setup of 6,000 new centrifuges in the Natanz station may aggravate the situation.

"Setup of new centrifuges and acceleration of the nuclear program by Iran, despite of the negative position of the international community and the UN Security Council, will harm the country from the political standpoint," Ahmad Shirzad, Iranian expert on nuclear technologies, said to Trend .

On 8 April, the Iranian expert stated that 6,000 new centrifuges will be set up in the Natanz nuclear station. According to IRNA, Ahmadinejad said that Iran will not suspend enrichment of uranium and will not discuss its nuclear program with any organization, except IAEA.

"This step by the official Tehran will make UN Security Council pass tougher sanctions against Iran," Shirzad, ex-MP of the Iranian Parliament, said in a telephone conversation from Teheran on 11 April. "Although, 300 new generation centrifuges (F2) have been set up in Natanz and the intention to set up 6,000 more centrifuges is just a plan, such a step by Iran unknown to IAEA may cause certain problems," Shirzad said. "Two months are required to make sure whether the centrifuges will work. Though Ahmadinejad divulged the plans on setup of 6,000 new centrifuges, they have not been yet set up and it is still not known whether the plan will be successful," said expert.

"In spite of the UN Security Council's decision, Iran did not suspend uranium enrichment. Moreover, Iran commenced preparation of new generation centrifuges, as well as still continues construction of IR-40 reactor and operation of the heavy water producing plant," IAEA said to Trend by e-mail on 11 April.

IAEA considers that Iran should continue taking efforts to strengthen the trust in scales and character of the current nuclear program. "In order to ensure full confidence that the nuclear program of Iran is of a peaceful character, guarantee should be provided by the IAEA which does not possess any concrete information about the current nuclear activity of Iran because for a long time the nuclear activity has been carried out in secrete," the same source stated, adding that IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei insistently calls on Iran to carry out necessary measures to confirm peaceful character of the program.

According to Shirzad, there are few uranium reserves in Iran and it is impossible to generate enriched uranium fuel in the Country. "Uranium enrichment will not lead to Iran's technical development. The nuclear stations of Iran are capable to enrich uranium at only 4%. Over 20% of the projects on enrichment were not tested. All these present obstacles for the development of the nuclear industry in Iran," he said.

According to the information provided by the IAEA, Iran informed the Agency in 2003 that it plans to establish more than 60,000 centrifuges by the end of 2005, but due to the lack of the uranium reserves, it could not realize this project. At the next meeting on 2-6 June, the IAEA Director General will make a report on the number and types of the centrifuges being used currently.

Till now, the UN Security Council has adopted three sanctions with regards to Iran's uranium enrichment plans. West accuses Iran of producing nuclear weapons. Tehran confirms that the nuclear program is of a peaceful character and denies these accusations.

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