“There is progress in the field of uranium enrichment, namely, the beginning of mechanical testing of the IR-9 centrifuge with (enrichment capacity) 50 SWU (separative work unit – a unit of work on the separation of isotopes, which is one of the indicators of the power of centrifuges),” Free News quotes him as saying.
The capacity of the first-generation IR-1 centrifuges is 1 SWU, and their operation is provided for by the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). There is no mention of the latest centrifuges in it.
On April 1, Reuters, citing a report from the International Atomic Energy Agency, reported that Iran had activated the fourth stage of advanced centrifuges for uranium enrichment at the underground plant in Natanz.
In May 2018, the United States withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal and reinstated tough sanctions against the Islamic Republic. Iran, in turn, announced a gradual reduction of its obligations, while the European participants considered it necessary to preserve the agreement.
On January 5, in the context of strained relations with Washington, Tehran announced the rejection of the “last key restriction in the nuclear deal” concerning the number of centrifuges for enriching uranium.
It has been reported that Iran has achieved 20% uranium enrichment at the Fordow facility, which is enough to carry out some nuclear weapons work.