FMP Plant to Supply Fuel to Arak Facility by Sept 2008

November 24, 2007

Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran Reza Aqazadeh said here Saturday that the FMP plant will be able to supply Arak 40-megawatt research reactor with fuel by September 2008.

"Fuel pellets for Arak 40 megawatt research reactor have been produced based on standards and fuel rods for Arak research reactor's fuel will be produced at ZPP plant too," Aqazadeh told IRNA here on Saturday.

Aqazadeh said that product samples of the two factories, i.e. ZPP and FMP, are in final stage of tentative operation.

Asked about claims that the process for installation of centrifuges has slowed and that IAEA had announced Iran injected UF6 gases to centrifuges less than expected and did enrichment even less than the declared level of 4.8 percent, Aqazadeh said, "When cascades are operating, that's up to operator to fluctuate uranium enrichment between one and 20 percent. We need an average four percent enrichment to produce fuel for nuclear power plants. And the point that the Agency has announced our enrichment is in the four percent level is positive. We do not need to go beyond that level. We are gaining new experience in enrichment. What we have today at our disposal is that 3,000 centrifuges are working simultaneously, we inject gas to all of them and the machines work on a natural process. Therefore, what has been mentioned in ElBaradei's report in that respect is not negative."

Asked about plans for installation of 56,000 centrifuges on Natanz enrichment facilities, Aqazadeh said, "We have no change or reconsideration in mind as far as the plan we intended in Natanz. We will proceed based on a pre-determined plan."
To a question about recent meeting of IAEA Board of Governors, Aqazadeh said the session was extremely important and proved the righteousness of Iran.

"In my view, we witnessed in the session the most successful period of settling our problems with the IAEA. Therefore, due to their weight in the session, westerners tried to downplay it (the success) by raising controversies. The weight of settling the problem with the P1 and P2 centrifuges cannot be tied to few sentences of the report, including implementation of the additional protocol settlement of the case, ruled out all the West's allegations."

He added, "I consider recent IAEA Board meeting as a very big success for the AEOI and the Iranian nation because it would open a new chapter in westerners' failure to abuse the IAEA. Therefore, westerners try to direct their pressure towards political issue and implementation of the additional protocol."

Elsewhere in the interview, Aqazadeh recommended westerners to try to direct Iran's issue into the channel of settlement rather than raising hues and cries.

"Now, in my opinion, conditions are completely ripe for Iran and the West to reach compromise so as to close Iran's nuclear case and save the world from false tumult. Westerners are now provided with the sort of justification they wished to extend to the world public opinion, that is Iran's cooperation with the IAEA. Therefore, I advise them not to toe the American line."