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Russia completes withdrawing enriched uranium from Iran — source

December 28, 2015, 13:57 UTC+3 VIENNA

In exchange, Tehran is expected to receive natural uranium

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VIENNA, December 28. /TASS/. Russia has completed withdrawing enriched uranium from Iran as part of an agreement between Tehran and the world’s six powers on the Iranian nuclear issue, a Russian diplomatic source familiar with the agreement’s implementation told TASS on Monday.

"This procedure has been completed," the source said.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said earlier there were plans to complete the withdrawal of enriched uranium from Iran until the end of the year.

According to him, the withdrawal volume amounted to "over 8.5 tons" of uranium low-enriched material. In exchange, Tehran is expected to receive natural uranium. As Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi said earlier, Iran will get 140 tons of uranium ore from Russia in exchange for enriched uranium.

Head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization Ali Akbar Salehi has said "the Islamic Republic of Iran will get 137 tons of the so-called yellow cake [uranium concentrate as the original raw material for enrichment]." Meanwhile, 9 tons of enriched uranium will be withdrawn into Russia," he said.

Under an agreement signed with the P5+1 group of international mediators (five permanent members of UN Security Council - US, UK, Russia, China, France - and Germany), Tehran undertook to limit its stockpile of uranium enriched to 3.67% from 10 tons to 300 kilograms. The Iranian authorities have made a decision to sell surplus amounts of enriched uranium abroad in exchange for natural uranium.

Reducing enriched uranium stocks is a mandatory term for switching to the implementation phase under the Iran nuclear deal. By that time, Iran is to cut the number of running centrifuges to 6,100 first-generation installations. All other centrifuges are to be dismantled and stored under control of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Enrichment activities will be allowed at 5,060 centrifuges at the Natanz facility.

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