Iran has denied that it has established a “secret” nuclear plant for the production of enriched uranium.
“This installation is not a secret one, which is why we announced its existence to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA),” Ali Akbar Saleri, Iran’s nuclear chief, said.
Iran’s state-run Press TV said Tehran has informed the IAEA that it is constructing a second plant for uranium enrichment in line with its guarantee to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to clarify its nuclear activities.
According to Press TV, the IAEA Safeguards Agreements originally declared that Iran is only obliged to inform the IAEA of the existence of enrichment plants 180 days before the introduction of nuclear materials into the facility.
However, after the establishment of Iran’s first enrichment plant in Natanz, stricter safeguards were introduced. Iran is now obliged to inform the IAEA of the existence and plans for nuclear plants when construction has begun.
While the disclosure has already heightened Western fears about Iranian nuclear activities, the IAEA conceded that Iran has not yet begun any action at the plant, the television station said.
The channel quoted IAEA spokesman, Marc Vidricaire as saying that “Iran informed the IAEA in a letter that a new pilot fuel enrichment plant is under construction in the country.”
He added that providing access to the plant “will allow us to assess safeguard verification requirements for the facility, but we understand that no nuclear material has been introduced as yet.”