Arak reactors’ plutonium not for atomic bombs construction: Salehi

TEHRAN, Dec. 23 (MNA) –Chief of Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Ali Akbar Salehi underlined that despite the claims of the westerners, manufactured plutonium in Arak reactor is not for constructing atomic bombs.

He made the remarks in a news conference on Monday after having the secondary circuit of Arak heavy water reactor operational.

“Westerners said the reactor is capable of producing eight kilograms of plutonium per year, which is enough for atomic bombs construction,” he said, “Having the reactor redesigned, it can only produce one kilogram of plutonium annually.”

He informed that the modernization of Arak heavy water reactor will be accomplished by the end of 2020.

Referring to redesigning of Arak heavy water reactor, called Khandab heavy water reactor, Salehi said that the project has been completed by cooperation with Russian experts and Iranian industrialists.

“Before JCPOA we had been working on this project for 16 years and after the nuclear deal we have worked on it for four years,” he added.

“The new reactor can manufacture Cobalt-60 to prevent its imports.” Salehi said reiterating that Iran does not seek construction of atomic bombs due to Fatwah of the Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

The official added that the heart of Arak reactor is to be replaced as well and the related agreements to do that are being signed.

"If we divide the Arak heavy water’s reactor into 52 systems, we could say that 20 of them have been completed so far," Salehi said.

"18 systems are being designed and we have signed contracts for the completion of 12 others," he added.

“Designing and constructing the research reactor of Arak heavy water is one of the salient achievements of the Islamic Republic of Iran taken in the field of nuclear technology," he said. 

MNA/4805563

News Code 153648

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