The head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran has announced the country's complete self-sufficiency in the nuclear fuel cycle, saying the Islamic Republic is now working on producing nuclear fuel with 60% purity.
Iran started the process of enriching uranium to 60% fissile purity at an above-ground nuclear plant at Natanz, the UN nuclear agency confirmed in April 2021. It made the step in response to an explosion that damaged equipment at the underground Fuel Enrichment Plant at Natanz. The country had previously only reached 20% purity.
"The efforts of the enemies by committing sabotage in the field of nuclear technology have made it the frontline. Our scientists stood up at the order of the Leader who said, 'Build yourselves'.
"They acted on the issue of 20% fuel, which was needed by Tehran's research reactor, and today we produce not only 20% fuel but also working on producing 60% fuel," Mohammad Eslami said on Wednesday.
The official touched on the crucial production of radiopharmaceuticals, saying the country is now moving toward using nuclear medicine in plasma therapy.
Eslami also touched on the "very important" role of heavy water which the enemies try to forbid Iran from using by accusing it of seeking to produce nuclear weapons.
He said if it had not been for the strategies of the Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, "we would have not gotten into nuclear technology and fallen far behind by now".
Eslami said, "The country's development plans must move without interruption, and the efforts of the country's scientists and youth must be spent for the great goals of the country, and we must endure hardships and vicissitudes to reach the peak."
He also said science and technology is the field of empowerment, but international organizations have sought in recent years to make the fields of aerospace, nuclear technology, information technology, biotechnology and nanotechnology an exclusive avant gard domain for a few select countries and prevent others, including Iran, from achieving them by creating obstacles.