Iran informs United Nations of increase in nuclear enrichment capacity

Iran informs United Nations of increase in nuclear enrichment capacity

The International Atomic Energy Agency confirmed it had received a letter from Iran, which Salehi said was submitted on Monday and outlined Tehran's plans.

European signatories are scrambling to save the accord, which they see as crucial to forestalling an Iranian nuclear weapon, by seeking to ring-fence trade with Iran against new USA financial sanctions to dissuade Tehran from quitting the deal.

Under the deal, the Islamic Republic curbed its capacity to enrich uranium for nuclear fuel and in return won a lifting of most global sanctions that had hobbled its economy.

Shortly after Mr Khamenei's speech, French carmaker PSA announced that it was pulling out of two joint ventures to sell its cars in Iran to avoid risking U.S. sanctions.

The message should be that "if the Iranians return" to enriching uranium that could enable them to build a nuclear bomb, 'a military coalition will be formed against them, ' Katz told Israeli public radio station Kan.

"However, at this particularly critical juncture, they will not contribute to build confidence in the nature of the Iranian nuclear programme", Maja Kocijancic, spokeswoman for European Union diplomatic chief Federica Mogherini, told AFP. He said, 'I will cancel or change the agreement.' There was no change, he canceled it.

The other signatories to the accord - Britain, France, Russia, China, and Germany - said they remain committed to the deal.

The deal allows Iran to continue 3.67% uranium enrichment, far below the roughly 90% threshold of weapons-grade. In exchange, the other signatories lifted crippling sanctions on the country, which are estimated to have cost the country some $500 billion by the time they were removed.

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Israel hopes that evidence from the secret nuclear archive will bolster Netanyahu's efforts to persuade German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron, and British Prime Minister Theresa May to follow US President Donald Trump and quit the 2015 nuclear pact.

Merkel said she agreed that Iran's activities in the Middle East were a concern, particularly for Israel's security.

France's PSA, which manufactures Peugeot and Citroen cars, on Monday became the latest to announce its plans to pull out of Iran, where it sold almost 445,000 cars a year ago.

Earlier, Netanyahu said the Iranian plan to increase its nuclear enrichment capacity was aimed at producing nuclear weapons to be used against Israel, its archrival.

However, Netanyahu did urge the French leader to impose economic sanctions on Iran to help dissuade it from pursuing a nuclear weapon.

"If Iran does not get the financial guarantees in oil and access to the financial system, then I don't see Iran sticking to the deal because the pressure from hardliners is only increasing", said a Western official.

Supporters also fear the reimposition of United States sanctions could hit European firms that have done business with Iran since the accord was signed. "Fortunately, we are not alone", he said.

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