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Foreign Policy

US obtains Iranian heavy water through intermediary: Iranian MFA

The United States obtains heavy water from Iran’s nuclear reactors through an intermediary, despite sanctions, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian revealed on Saturday

Speaking at an event organized in Tehran, capital of Iran, the head of Iranian diplomacy echoed the repeated statements of officials of the Iranian nuclear agency.

He added that Iran’s most sanctioned sectors, including missiles and nuclear power, are also the most advanced.

Hossein Amir-Abdollahian cited the words of a European official who, after carrying out tests, claimed that Iranian heavy water was “of the best quality” in the world.

Heavy water, a form of water that contains heavy hydrogen, is considered the most sought-after nuclear material after uranium. Iran is one of the few countries to produce it with great purity.

In September, Behrouz Kamalvandi, spokesman and deputy head of Iran’s nuclear agency, said heavy water produced in Iran “ranks first in the world in terms of quality,” adding that European countries had expressed interest. for this resource.

Iran sells a liter of heavy water for $1,000, he said, adding that the product is used to diagnose and treat serious illnesses such as cancer.

In August, the head of Iran’s nuclear agency, Mohammad Eslami, said heavy water from the Khandab nuclear facility in central Iran was in particularly high demand, adding that significant investments were made in products derived from heavy water.

The purchase of Iranian heavy water was previously revealed by Behrouz Kamalvandi in April, when he said that Washington had “once again” expressed interest in purchasing heavy water from Iran due to its “good quality”.

“We are aware that the heavy water produced in Iran is one of the best in the world and that even the Americans tried to buy it after analyzing its properties,” he was quoted as saying.

The impasse in protracted negotiations to revive the 2015 nuclear pact, which allowed Iran to retain up to 130 tonnes of heavy water, has worsened tensions between Tehran and Washington.

In April 2016, after the historic deal was reached, U.S. officials reportedly declared their intention to purchase 32 tons of heavy water from Iran worth $8.6 million, a move criticized by Republicans. .

This measure was quickly followed by a law from the United States House of Representatives which blocked the purchase of heavy water from Iran.

In November 2019, the United Nations nuclear watchdog announced that Iran’s stockpile of heavy water for reactors (131.5 tonnes) had crossed the limit set in the 2015 agreement with world powers.

The Arak Heavy Water Nuclear Reactor, also known as Arak or IR-40, located in northeastern Iran, is Iran’s main facility for producing heavy water derivatives.

This article is originally published on aa.com.tr

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