( RIA Novosti ) - Tehran intends to become a nuclear fuel exporter, the Iranian president said Friday.
Since Iran resumed uranium enrichment in January 2006, the country has been the focus of international concerns, as some Western countries, particularly the U.S., suspect Tehran is pursuing a covert weapons program. But Tehran has consistently claimed it needs nuclear power for civilian power generation and is fully entitled to its own nuclear program.
"Not only will we not halt the uranium enrichment centrifuges, but we will quickly integrate them into our nuclear fuel cycle so as to become an exporter of nuclear fuel," Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said.
He said Tehran will not yield to international pressure and abandon its right to pursue peaceful nuclear technology, adding that UN sanctions against Iran "have brought no result."
"There is no doubt that these sanctions will boomerang on the arrogant powers, as we will soon be able to see," he said.
Ahmadinejad said Tehran will ignore any new resolutions against it that the UN Security Council may pass in the future.
On Wednesday, Mohamed ElBaradei, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), presented a report that said Iran has continued to ignore the demands of the UN Security Council to halt its uranium enrichment and has continued working on nuclear projects.
The report could trigger a new wave of sanctions against Iran, which will be the third since penalties were first introduced against it in December 2006.
ElBaradei said earlier this year that it will take between four and eight years for Iran to produce a nuclear bomb if it maintains the current pace of nuclear development.
On April 19, Ahmadinejad said that Iran had mastered industrial-scale production of nuclear fuel, giving up a research-level program. Recent reports said Tehran was already running 1,600 uranium enrichment centrifuges in its Natanz underground complex.