Iran’s ambassador and permanent representative to the Vienna-based international organizations said on Monday that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has confirmed that the Islamic Republic has started enriching uranium up to 20%.
Kazem Gharibabadi said that Iran sent an amendment of information questionnaire on the Fordow nuclear site plan to the IAEA and its inspectors came to the site on Monday morning to verify the information and remove the seal of the cylinder containing 4.1% enriched uranium. The IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi confirmed in a report that Iran has kicked off uranium production up to 20% enrichment.
The report underlines that the inspectors also removed a 137.2 kg cylinder with 4.1% enriched uranium and the cylinder has been connected to the production line to produce uranium enriched up to 20%, he added.
Based on a recent law approved by Iranian parliamentarians, the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) plans to produce up to 20% enriched uranium in the Fordow Fuel Enrichment Plant (FFEP), Gharibabadi said, noting that the design information questionnaire of the Fordow nuclear site will also be updated in the future.
Ali Rabiei, spokesman of the government of Iran declared that the process of producing uranium to 20% purity has started in Martyr Ali-Mohammadi (Fordow) enrichment complex.
The government considers the aforementioned law passed by parliament as binding and it will abide by it.
President Hassan Rouhani ordered the start of 20% enrichment in recent days, Rabiei said, adding that Iran initiated the gas injection process a few hours ago and the first UF6 product will be produced within hours.
Two years after the US unilaterally withdrew from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and the European signatories to the agreement dragged their feet to fulfil their obligations under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iran took steps to reduce its obligations under the IAEA supervision and has repeatedly said that if the United States returns to the JCPOA and other parties fulfil their obligations, Iran will reverse the rolling back of its commitments.