According to the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), Iran has begun preparing the infrastructure for building advanced centrifuges at its Natanz enrichment facility.
“Yesterday, we took the first step and submitted a letter to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on the start of certain activities, but we started to take the necessary practical measures today,” AEOI chief Ali Akbar Salehi said at a press conference in Tehran on June 5. “If conditions are ripe, I may explain tomorrow night at Natanz one of the projects we have in mind, which is a center for the production of new centrifuges.”
“If we were progressing normally, it would have taken six or seven years, but this will now be ready within weeks and months.”
Salehi added that Iran has also increased the capacity to generate electricity at the Natanz facility.
The AEOI chief added that the works are being conducted with a respect to Iran’s commitments in the framework of the 2015 nuclear deal.
On June 4, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei ordered the IAEA to make preparations for enrichment of uranium up to a level of 190,000 SWU (separative work unit) without any delay as the Iran nuclear deal may have been heading to its collapse.
SWU is the measure of the effort required to separate isotopes of uranium during an enrichment process. 1SWU is equivalent to 1 kilogram of separative work.
“It seems from what they say that some European governments expect the Iranian nation to both put up with sanctions and give up its nuclear activities and continue to observe limitations [on its nuclear program]. I tell those governments that this bad dream will never come true,” Khamenei said adding that the Iranian nation and government cannot tolerate to be both sanctioned and be put in the “nuclear custody.”
Late on the same day, the AEOI said it is accelerating the preparation of infrastructure for the manufacturing of centrifuge rotors and boosting the domestic capacity for the production of UF4 and UF6 gases.
On May 8, US President Donald Trump announced that Washington is withdrawing from the nuclear agreement and is going to increase pressure on Iran.