Published: Wed, June 06, 2018
Global Media | By Jackie Banks

Israel shares key files from Iran nuclear cache with Germany, France, UK

Israel shares key files from Iran nuclear cache with Germany, France, UK

Iran said on Tuesday (Jun 5) it has launched a plan to boost uranium enrichment capacity with new centrifuges, raising the pressure on European diplomats scrambling to rescue the crumbling nuclear deal after Washington pulled out.

Iran's top leader said on Monday he had ordered preparations to increase uranium enrichment capacity if a nuclear deal with world powers falls apart after the USA withdrawal, and he vowed never to accept limits on Tehran's ballistic missile program.

"What we are doing does not violate the (2015 nuclear) agreement", he said, adding that a letter was submitted to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) "yesterday regarding the start of certain activities".

"We will continue our support to oppressed nations. our enemies have staged economic and psychological warfare against us and new American sanctions are part of it", Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said in a speech broadcast live on state TV.

Iran has said it has the option of resuming industrial-scale enrichment now that the US has withdrawn from the deal.

The EU is trying to come up with ways to persuade Iran to stick with the deal by protecting the economic benefits it gained when tough sanctions were lifted in return for it halting the weapons-capable aspects of its nuclear program.

Katz noted that many worldwide companies from France, England, Germany, Russia and other countries have already announced their intention to suspend their activity in Iran "because they don't want to be subject to the American sanctions".

French president Emmanuel Macron and Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu met in Paris on Tuesday for talks largely focusing on Iran.

Ali Akbar Salehi told reporters that the infrastructure, which has been developed domestically, has the capability to produce several hundred-thousand Separative Work Units of enriched uranium.

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Besides the US and Iran , France was joined by fellow European Union nations Germany and the United Kingdom , as well as China and Russian Federation .

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Iran has long said it wants nuclear energy only for civilian uses.

The other signatories to the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action have been scrambling to find ways to keep it going since Trump's announcement that he would pull out and reinstate United States sanctions.

"We agree that the question of Iran's regional influence is worrying, especially for Israel's security", Merkel told a joint news conference with Netanyahu after a meeting in Berlin.

"The agreement must be preserved but France never considered it to sufficient and wholly satisfactory", Macron said.

Iranian officials maintain they have no interest in developing nuclear weapons, and in fact Khamenei claimed Islamic law prohibits the construction of nuclear bombs during his remarks.

A spokesman for Iran's atomic energy agency said preparations would be made to increase the pace of uranium enrichment even further if the JCPOA collapses.

Germany, France and Britain are three of the signatories of the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) between world powers and Iran, aimed at keeping Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

Tehran has threatened to restart its uranium enrichment programme at an "industrial level" if the 2015 pact falls apart.

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