Iran says it's installing new nuclear enrichment machines

By REUTERS
July 19, 2011 11:15

Foreign Ministry in Tehran confirms earlier reports that Iran was installing more advanced centrifuges at large-scale testing site.

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Ahmadinejad visits Iran's Natanz nuclear facility

Ahmadinejad at Natanz (R) 311. (photo credit: REUTERS)

TEHRAN - Iran is installing new uranium enrichment machines aimed at speeding up progress in its nuclear program, the Iranian Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday, a development that may add to Western concern about Tehran's aims.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast appeared to confirm a Reuters story last week that Iran was installing two newer and more advanced models of the centrifuges used to refine uranium for large-scale testing at a research site.

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If Iran eventually succeeds in introducing the more modern centrifuges for production, it could significantly shorten the time needed to stockpile material which can have civilian as well as military purposes, if processed much further.

"By installing the new centrifuges progress is being made with more speed and better quality," Mehmanparast said, adding the move showed Iran was being successful in its "peaceful nuclear activity."

Iran denies Western accusations that it is seeking to develop nuclear weapons and says it is refining uranium for electricity generation and medical applications.

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