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Russian envoy describes Iran’s plans to increase uranium production as political message

Earlier, the Iranian Atomic Energy Organization spokesman said that the country’s stockpile of enriched uranium might exceed the 300 kilogram limit set in the JPCOA after June 27

VIENNA, June 18. /TASS/. Tehran’s plans to increase its uranium production are in fact a political message, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the Vienna-based international organizations Mikhail Ulyanov wrote on Twitter on Tuesday.

"How to assess the decision of Iran to accelerate the production of low enriched uranium? It’s clear that at this stage this is a political message that Iran expects more energetic efforts to restore the balance between economic and nuclear parts of the JCPOA [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action] undermined by US sanctions," the tweet reads.

On June 17, Iranian Atomic Energy Organization Spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi said that the country’s stockpile of enriched uranium might exceed the 300 kilogram limit set in the JPCOA after June 27. At the same time, according to him, Iran will stop exporting heavy water and may also surpass the deal’s uranium enrichment level of 3.67%

Iran nuclear deal issue

In 2015, Iran and six major powers (five member states of the United Nations Security Council - Russia, the United States, France, the United Kingdom and China - and Germany) agreed on the final Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, which particularly stipulated the removal of sanctions imposed on Tehran over its nuclear program.

On May 8, 2018, US President Donald Trump announced Washington’s withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal. He said that old sanctions on Iran would be restored and new ones would be introduced in case Tehran attempted to pursue its nuclear ambitions. The first batch of new US sanctions on Iran took effect on August 7 and the second one became effective on November 5. In contrast, Great Britain, Germany and France called on other participants in the deal to continue fulfilling it. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that Moscow would seek to maintain the agreement.

On May 8, 2019, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that Tehran was reducing its commitments to the JCPOA. "The EU/E3+2 will face Iran's further actions if they cannot fulfill their obligations within the next 60 days and secure Iran's interests," he wrote on Twitter.