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U.S. Says Iran Plans To Resume Making Centrifuge Parts

25 June 2004 -- A U.S. official has said Iran has informed Britain, France, and Germany that it will resume making uranium centrifuge parts, breaking an agreement it struck with the three countries in February.

U.S. Undersecretary of State for Arms Control John Bolton was speaking in Washington yesterday. Bolton also said that the United States had never believed Iran had ceased making the parts and that the International Atomic Energy Agency board of governors last week said it was troubled that Tehran had continued to do so.

Bolton called it an act of defiance of the IAEA and a deliberate challenge to the international community.

Last week, the IAEA board of governors unanimously passed a resolution that sharply rebuked Iran for not cooperating fully with a UN investigation.

Washington believes Iran is seeking to develop atomic weapons, while Tehran insists it wants nuclear power for electricity.