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Iran says tested new nuclear enrichment machine, may irk West

Published on Aug 28, 2014 1:29 AM
 

DUBAI/VIENNA (Reuters) - Iran has conducted "mechanical" tests on a new, advanced machine to refine uranium, a senior official was quoted as saying on Wednesday, a disclosure that may annoy Western states pushing Teheran to scale back its nuclear programme.

Iran's development of new centrifuges to replace its current breakdown-prone model is watched closely by Western officials. It could allow the Islamic Republic to amass potential atomic bomb material much faster.

Teheran says its nuclear programme is peaceful and that it produces low-enriched uranium only to make fuel for a planned network of atomic energy plants. If processed to a high fissile concentration, uranium can be used for nuclear weapons.

"Manufacturing and production of new centrifuges is our right," Iranian atomic energy chief Ali Akbar Salehi said.

 
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