Ahmadinejad signs new law to continue uranium enrichment

Iran`s President on Monday signed a bill to continue uranium enrichment.

Updated: Aug 16, 2010, 21:19 PM IST

Tehran: Iran`s President on Monday signed a
bill to continue uranium enrichment, and limiting cooperation
with the UN`s nuclear watchdog, state news agency IRNA
reported.

The law on Safeguarding the Islamic Republic of Iran`s
Peaceful Nuclear Achievements signed by President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad calls for continued enrichment of uranium to 20
percent level, IRNA reported.

Under the new law the government is "obliged to
continue its efforts to produce fuel for the Tehran research
reactor as well as continue the 20 per cent enrichment (of
uranium)... and to produce the fuel plates required for the
reactor."

The law also stipulates that the government "cooperate
with the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) only under
the framework of the Non-Proliferation Treaty`s (NPT) general
regulations."

It bans any cooperation that goes beyond the NPT
requirements, the English language Press TV said on its
website.

Iran says it is enriching uranium to 20 per cent level
to manufacture fuel for the Tehran reactor which makes medical
isotopes. Top Iranian officials say Tehran will stop the
sensitive work if it gets fuel from world powers.

Western countries want Iran to stop the 20 per cent
enrichment work as they suspect it brings it theoretically
closer to the 90 per cent level required to make an atom bomb.

Tehran says its entire atomic programme is purely
civilian in nature.

The United Nations, the United States, the European
Union, Australia and Canada have imposed sanctions on Iran for
pursuing the enrichment programme.

IRNA said the new law also empowers the government to
"invest in different fields of peaceful nuclear technology...
(to achieve) full nuclear independence."

It also says that the government "must retaliate under
any circumstances against countries which opt to inspect
Iranian ships or their cargo" in high seas as stipulated by
the new UN sanctions on June 9.

Under the latest UN sanctions member states can carry
out high sea inspections of Iranian ships suspected of
carrying equipment and material for nuclear use.

PTI