Thursday, August 24, 2006

Iran "Has Advanced Centrifuges"

An RFE/RL report quotes an Iranian dissident group as stating that Iran has already built 15 of the P-2 enrichment centrifuges that lie at the centre of the present standoff between Iran and the West over Iran's nuclear program, and that hundreds more could be built in the near future:
The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) says the advanced technology could help Iran dramatically speed up uranium enrichment and eventually lead to atomic-bomb material.

The chairman of NCRI's Foreign Affairs Committee, Mohammad Mohadessin, told a news conference in Paris today that his group has located what it believes is a secret production site for P-2 centrifuges near Tehran.

Mohadessin further claims blueprints for the P-2 centrifuges were provided to Iran in 1995 by a black-market network run by Abdul Qadeer Khan, then Pakistan's leading nuclear scientist.

NCRI, which is widely believed to be a front group for the Mujahedin-e Khalq (People's Mujahedin) of Iran, is considered a terrorist organization by the United States.

In August 2002, the group was among the first to alert the world of Iran's uranium-enrichment activities.
Haaretz covers the story here.

Meanwhile, Reuters is reporting that Germany has joined the United States in condemning Tehran's insistence on enriching uranium, thus bringing a European dimension to the pressure on Iran, and countering the wishes of Moscow.
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