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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran Press TV

Russia prepared to upgrade Iran centrifuges: Iran nuclear chief

Iran Press TV

Wed Sep 16, 2015 4:38PM

The head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) says Russia has expressed its readiness to upgrade the centrifuge machines currently operating in the Islamic Republic.

Ali Akbar Salehi made the remark following a meeting with Sergei Kiriyenko, the head of Russian state nuclear energy corporation Rosatom in the Austrian city of Vienna, IRNA reported Wednesday.

The Russians are "very strong and [are] leading" in the field of producing stable isotopes, Salehi said, adding that they "have declared their preparedness for cooperation and upgrading Iran's centrifuges for the purpose of producing stable isotopes."

Salehi emphasized that the task is one of Russia's commitments under the recent nuclear agreement between Iran and the P5+1 countries.

On July 14, Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council – the United States, Britain, France, China and Russia – plus Germany finalized the text of the agreement dubbed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in the Austrian capital of Vienna.

Under the JCPOA, limits will be put on Iran's nuclear activities in exchange for, among other things, the removal of all economic and financial bans against the Islamic Republic.

Salehi also hailed Russia as one of the most influential members of the P5+1, saying that Moscow's suggestions were "very productive" in leading to the breakthrough in the nuclear negotiations between Iran and the six other countries.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Salehi said that his talks with Kiriyenko also focused on Moscow's other commitments under the JCPOA, including the time when and the method with which enriched uranium must be given by Iran to Russia and natural uranium be received in return.

Touching on a recent contract with Russia to build two new nuclear power plants in Iran's southern city of Bushehr, the AEOI head said that the Russian side has agreed to provide financing for the projects as far as possible.

Salehi added that he has invited Rosatom's chief to travel to Iran for the beginning of the construction of Bushehr-2 and Bushehr-3 nuclear power plants.

Iran began building the Bushehr plant in the mid-1970s with the help of Germany and France but it took more than three decades to complete the 1,000-megawatt facility.

The Islamic Republic revived the project by signing a deal with Russia in 1995. The facility on the Persian Gulf coast is Iran's first nuclear power plant, currently generating electricity at full capacity.

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