News ID: 270973
Published: 0153 GMT July 03, 2020

AEOI: Natanz incident causing no slowdown, radioactive contamination at facility

AEOI: Natanz incident causing no slowdown, radioactive contamination at facility
Photo by Atomic Energy Organization of Iran

The spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) said an incident hitting the country’s Natanz nuclear facility early Thursday has caused no stoppage or slowdown of enrichment work at the facility, because the affected shed was actually under construction and not part of the enrichment process yet.

Behrouz Kamalvandi made the remarks in an interview on Thursday evening regarding the incident that is currently under investigation for causing material damage to the inactive shed that is located in an open area of ​​the Natanz site.

Kamalvandi said, “The incident took place at about 02:00 local time this morning [Thursday] and caused no loss of life,” adding, “We have many open-space sheds at Shahid Ahmadi Roshan enrichment complex. Our enrichment activities are mostly done underground,” Press TV wrote.

“Our open-space sheds do different things. This was one of those sheds, which was under construction. We have material damage, but no loss of life,” he added.

Kamalvandi refuted reports about possible radioactive contamination following the incident, saying, “Contrary to the false propaganda by enemy and counterrevolutionary media, no contamination has occurred because there has been no nuclear material in this shed.”

“Our [nuclear] activities are being carried out without stoppage and in the best possible form in this important facility and enrichment of [nuclear] material continues.”


Cause of incident determined 


Spokesman of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Keyvan Khosravi said on Friday the cause of the incident has been determined and will be announced later, IRNA reported.

"Investigations by the relevant agencies have accurately determined the cause of the incident... at the Natanz nuclear complex," Khosravi said. "Due to security considerations, the cause and manner of the incident will be announced at a convenient time."

Natanz is a uranium enrichment center located in the city of the same name in Isfahan Province, some 250 kilometers (155 miles) south of the capital, Tehran.

It is among the sites now being monitored by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) under a 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and major powers.

The IAEA, meanwhile, announced that it was aware of the incident, but did not foresee any change to the UN nuclear watchdog’s regular verification of Iran’s commitments to the body’s Safeguards Agreement as a result of the development.

The Safeguards Agreement between Iran and the IAEA ensures non-diversion of nuclear material declared by the Islamic Republic.


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