Uranium Enriched To 60% Purity At Fordo Site – Iran

Iran has begun producing enriched uranium at 60% purity at the country’s underground Fordo nuclear plant, official media reported Tuesday, describing it as a response to a resolution by the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog.

The increased enrichment, reported by the official news agency IRNA, was seen as a significant addition to the country’s nuclear program.

Enrichment to 60% purity is one short, technical step away from weapons-grade levels of 90%. Nonproliferation experts have warned in recent months that Iran now has enough 60%-enriched uranium to reprocess into fuel for at least one nuclear bomb.

The International Atomic Energy Agency has reported that Iran is enriching uranium to 60% purity. Iran is already enriching to 60% purity at its Natanz nuclear facility in central Iran. Fordo is some 100 kilometers (62 miles) south of the capital of Tehran.

IRNA did not give details on the amount of the enriched uranium being produced.

On Monday, Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman, Nasser Kanaani, said his country took the steps in reaction to what he said was a resolution by the IAEA, the UN nuclear watchdog. Officials did not elaborate.

Earlier this month, the IAEA said it believes that Iran has further increased its stockpile of highly enriched uranium. As recently as last week, the agency criticized Tehran for continuing to bar the agency’s officials from accessing or monitoring Iranian nuclear sites.

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