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Iran Might Resume Centrifuge Assembly

20 June 2004 -- In the latest development in Iran's row with the international community over its nuclear program, the Foreign Ministry says the country could soon resume the assembly of centrifuges used to enrich uranium.

Spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told reporters in Tehran today that a decision will be made "in the coming days."

However, Asefi said the question is one of whether to assemble parts for the enrichment process. He said Iran does not yet intend to resume the highly sensitive enrichment process itself.

Iran's top national-security official, Hassan Rowhani, said yesterday that his country was reconsidering its suspension of uranium enrichment.

Rowhani's comment came after the UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on 18 June adopted a resolution criticizing Iran for not cooperating fully with nuclear inspectors and urging Iran to be more forthcoming.

The IAEA is investigating allegations that Iran is using a bid to generate atomic energy as a cover for top-secret weapons development.