FILE PHOTO: The Iranian flag flutters in front the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) headquarters in Vienna, Austria March 4, 2019. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger/File Photo
GENEVA (Reuters) – Iran has passed the 3.67% uranium enrichment cap set by its landmark 2015 nuclear deal and may enrich at even higher levels, the spokesman for Iran’s Atomic Energy Organisation, Behrouz Kamalvandi, said on Monday according to the IRIB news agency.
Iran said on Sunday it would shortly boost uranium enrichment above the cap, prompting a warning from U.S. President Donald Trump, who wants the pact renegotiated, that Tehran “better be careful”.
“Twenty percent is not needed now, but if we want we will produce it. When we’ve put aside 3.67% enrichment we have no obstacle or problem with this action,” Kamalvandi was quoted as saying, noting that options for enriching at higher levels had been discussed with the Supreme National Security Council.
“There is the 20% option and there are options even higher than that but each in its own place. Today if our country’s needs are one thing, we won’t pursue something else just to scare the other side a little more.
“But they know it’s an upward trend,” he said.
Increasing the number of centrifuges is an option for Iran’s third step in reducing its commitments to the nuclear deal, Kamalvandi said, noting that restarting IR-2 and IR-2 M centrifuges is an option.
The remaining European signatories to the nuclear deal should act quickly to fulfill their promises because Iran will continue reducing its commitments to the deal until it achieves a result, Kamalvandi said, according to IRIB.
Reporting by Babak Dehghanpisheh; Editing by Catherine Evans