Iran nuclear chief: uranium enrichment program to continue unchanged

The Natanz nuclear enrichment facility, 180 miles south of Tehran, Iran, on April 9, 2007.

Iran has no plans to change its uranium enrichment program following the election of moderate politician Hassan Rouhani as president on June 14, Iran’s atomic energy agency chief said this week.

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“The Islamic Republic of Iran, given its forward movement and according to its national plans for future progress, intends to produce about 20,000 megawatts of nuclear-generated electricity (by 2020),” Fereydoun Abbasi-Davani said at a nuclear energy conference in St Petersburg, according to Tehran News.

Abbasi-Davani announced that Iran’s Bushehr nuclear power plant, which the UN said had been shut down in May, was “brought back online” this week, Reuters reported.

He also said Iran would continue to refine uranium at its underground Fordow plant. Western countries would like to see that plant closed, since it enriches uranium to a level that’s relatively close to what is needed to make atom bombs, Reuters reported.

Iran claims it enriches uranium for power and medical purposes only.

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