Ahmadinejad signs law on uranium enrichment

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Monday signed a bill obliging the government to press ahead with uranium enrichment while limiting cooperation with the UN nuclear watchdog.

By (AFP)

Published: Mon 16 Aug 2010, 7:51 PM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 5:48 AM

The bill, Safeguarding the Islamic Republic of Iran’s Peaceful Nuclear Achievements, which lawmakers approved last month, calls for continued enrichment of uranium to the 20-percent level, IRNA news agency reported.

Under the law, the government is “obliged to continue its efforts to produce fuel for the Tehran research reactor as well as continue the 20 percent enrichment (of uranium)... and to produce the fuel plates required for the reactor.”

The law also stipulates that the government “cooperate with the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) only under the framework of the Non-Proliferation Treaty’s (NPT) general regulations.”

It bans any cooperation that goes beyond the NPT requirements, the English-language Press TV said on its website.

Iran says it is enriching uranium to 20 percent level to manufacture fuel for the Tehran reactor which makes medical isotopes. Top Iranian officials say Tehran will stop the sensitive work if it gets fuel from world powers.

Western countries want Iran to stop enriching uranium to 20 percent as they suspect it brings it theoretically closer to the 90-percent level required to make an atom bomb.

Tehran says its entire atomic programme is purely civilian in nature.

The United Nations, the United States, the European Union, Australia and Canada have imposed sanctions on Iran for pursuing the enrichment programme.

IRNA said the new law also empowers the government to “invest in different fields of peaceful nuclear technology... (to achieve) full nuclear independence.”

It also says the government “must retaliate under any circumstances against countries which opt to inspect Iranian ships or their cargo” in high seas as stipulated by the new UN sanctions on June 9.

Under the latest UN sanctions, member states can carry out high sea inspections of Iranian ships suspected of carrying equipment and material for nuclear use.

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