TEHRAN — President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said Iran would consider
halting its 20 percent uranium enrichment if the West provides the fuel
for a medical reactor in Tehran, ISNA news agency reported on Saturday.
they give us the fuel and we are in possession of it, we can examine a
halt" in enriching uranium to 20 percent, Ahmadinejad was quoted as
saying at a press conference in New York on Friday.
Ahmadinejad ordered Iranian atomic chief Ali Akbar Salehi to step up
uranium refinement to 20 percent after a deal drafted by the UN atomic
watchdog to supply the material to Tehran hit deadlock.
we were not interested in building a new plant for the 20 percent fuel.
Based on the law, members of the (International Atomic Energy) Agency
were supposed to provide us with the fuel," Ahmadinejad said.
informed the agency of our demand that member states should give us the
fuel, but they turned this issue into a political game," he said.
had previously enriched uranium to just 3.5 percent purity but it says
the 20 percent enrichment is required to fuel the reactor in the
Since February, Iranian officials have said on several
occasions that they could stop 20 percent enrichment if negotiations
with the West to exchange their lower level uranium for the fuel are
World powers, led by Washington, strongly oppose
Iran's uranium enrichment programme which they suspect masks a nuclear
weapons drive, something Tehran vehemently denies.
that by enriching uranium to the 20 percent level, Iran has
theoretically come closer to the 90 percent purity needed for an atomic
In June the UN Security Council approved a fourth round of
sanctions against the Islamic republic in a bid to halt its enrichment