Sunday, November 29, 2009

Iran playing with fire -In response to Obama's diplomatic effort, Iran approves plan for 10 new nuclear plants

(Reuters).Iran warns it will cut cooperation with UN, two days after IAEA votes to rebuke Tehran over secret enrichment plant.

The Iranian government on Sunday approved a plan to construct 10 new uranium enrichment plants, just two days after the International Atomic Energy Agency voted to rebuke the Islamic Republic for building an enrichment plant in secret.

The new enrichment plants would be the same size as its main enrichment complex at Natanz, state broadcaster IRIB reported.

Hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Iran should aim to produce 250-300 tons of nuclear fuel a year, it added.

Iran has one industrial-scale uranium enrichment plant near Natanz, in central Iran. The IAEA said earlier this month that about 8,600 centrifuges had been set up in Natanz, but only about 4,000 were enriching uranium. The facility will eventually house 54,000 centrifuges.

The newly revealed enrichment site, known as Fordo, is a small scale site that will house nearly 3,000 centrifuges.

State broadcaster IRIB said location of five the new plants had already been decided and that work on these should start within two months. At the same time, the parliament agreed that its Atomic Energy Organization should find suitable location for other five.

Earlier Sunday, Iran's parliament speaker said Tehran could move to reduce its cooperation level with the United Nations nuclear agency watchdog if the West continues to pressure the Islamic state over its nuclear program.

The Islamic Republic has already denounced Friday's IAEA resolution, which won rare backing from China and Russia, as "intimidation" which would poison its talks with world powers.

"If you do not stop these ridiculous carrot-and-stick policies, wewill in return adopt new policies and seriously decrease cooperationwith the International Atomic Energy Agency," Larijani, an influential conservative, told the assembly.