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November 27, 2013 10:47 am

Iranian FM Zarif: We Will Continue Construction at Arak Reactor

avatar by Joshua Levitt

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Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. Photo: WikiCommons.

Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. Photo: WikiCommons.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif said his country’s Arak nuclear reactor will continue to be built, apparently flying in the face of the agreement reached this week to limit its nuclear program, Reuters reported from Tehran on Wednesday.

Speaking to parliament, Zarif said, “The capacity at the Arak site is not going to increase. It means no new nuclear fuel will be produced and no new installations will be installed, but construction will continue there,” according to a televised broadcast on Iran’s Press TV.

Iran agreed at the weekend to not make “any further advances of its activities” on the uncompleted heavy-water research reactor, according to the exact wording of the treaty.

But, Reuters cited experts as saying it was unclear if Zarif might be interpreting the agreement to allow Tehran to build components off-site to install later in the nuclear reactor.

Tehran said it wants the reactor to produce medical isotopes, but it could also be used to produce plutonium, which, along with enriched uranium, can be used to fuel a nuclear bomb.

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