Ahmadinejad says Iran installing more advanced centrifuges in main uranium enrichment facilityBy AP
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Iran installing advanced enrichment centrifuges
TEHRAN, Iran — Iran’s president says his country is installing more advanced centrifuges at its main uranium enrichment facility, a step certain to add to international concern over Tehran’s accelerating nuclear program.
Iran announced a week ago that it was enriching uranium to a higher level for use in fueling a reactor that produces medical isotopes. The new enrichment work is of major concern to the U.S. and its allies because at higher levels the material can be used in nuclear warheads.
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told a news conference the new centrifuges are not yet operational but are five times more efficient than an earlier model at its Natanz enrichment plant.
Iran says its nuclear work is only for peaceful purposes.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.
VIENNA (AP) — The U.S., Russia and France say that Iran’s project to enrich uranium to a higher degree is raising fresh concerns about its nuclear intentions.
Their joint statement is critical of Tehran’s decision to enrich to the 20-percent level, saying it represents “a further step toward a capability to produce highly enriched uranium.”
Uranium enriched up to 90 percent is used to arm nuclear warheads. Iran says its enrichment program is peaceful, but the international community fears it is a cover for plans to develop such weapons.
The confidential joint statement was shared Tuesday with The Associated Press.