Iran confirms operation of new generation of centrifuges

Iran said Sunday that it has begun operating a new generation of centrifuges to enrich uranium, the first official confirmation by Tehran after diplomats with the UN nuclear watchdog reported the development earlier this month. The new IR-2 centrifuges can churn out enriched uranium at more than double the rate of the machines that now form the backbone of Iran's controversial nuclear program. "We are (now) running a new generation of centrifuges," the official IRNA news agency quoted Javad Vaidi, deputy of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, as saying without providing further detail. The International Atomic Energy Agency highlighted the "new-generation centrifuges" in its latest report on Iran released Friday, but did not provide details on their operation.