Getting the government to give up its uranium enrichment program is the key issue
Iran started this month inserting 163 fuel assemblies into a Russian built 1000 MW VVER light water reactor located at Bushehr on Iran's Persian Gulf coast. In a few months, technicians will withdraw controls rods to start the process of operating the reactor and making electricity.
The fuel is enriched to approximately 4.6%. Russia has agreed to supply the fuel for the reactor for the next 10 years and to take it back. Many nonproliferation experts say that this arrangement ensures that the reactor will not be able to support development of nuclear weapons.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told the Jerusalem Post on October 26,
"The United States does not see Iran's Bushehr nuclear reactor as a threat. Our problem is not with their reactor at Bushehr, our problem is with their facilities at places like Natanz and their secret facility at Qom and other places where we believe they are conducting their weapons program."
This has raised fears it will eventually enrich to 90% which is bomb making material, also called “highly enriched uranium,” or HEU.
Will the latest round of sanctions make a difference? Can Iran, with its fractured internal politics, negotiate and implement an agreement with the western powers? How real is it’s offer to return to negotiations Nov 10th?
Read all about it at the ANS Nuclear Cafe now online.
# # #