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BunkerHill24 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 12:54 AM
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'Iran not capable to produce HEU before 2013'
'Iran not capable to produce HEU before 2013'
Fri, 07 Aug 2009 23:27:24 GMT

Iran will not be technically capable of producing bomb-grade uranium, before 2013, the US State Department's intelligence office has concluded.

"While Iran made significant progress since 2007 in installing and operating centrifuges, continues to assess it is unlikely that Iran will have the technical capability to produce HEU (highly enriched uranium) before 2013," the US Intelligence Chief Dennis Blair wrote in a document.

The document answered questions posed by the Senate Select Intelligence Committee members at a February hearing and was obtained by the Federation of American Scientists through a Freedom of Information Act request on Friday.

He noted the judgment was based on an estimate of when Iran would have the functional ability to perform enrichment.

"When making judgments of when Iran would be 'technically capable' of producing enough highly enriched uranium for a nuclear weapon, we are estimating Iran's functional ability to perform the enrichment rather than making a judgment about when Iran might make any political decision to produce HEU," Blair stated.

In his earlier testimony to Congress, Blair had declared that Iran might produce enough bomb-grade uranium as early as 2010 or as late as 2015.

In the testimony, he had also referred to the assessment conducted by the Institute for Nuclear Research of the Russian Academy of Sciences (INR), which said Iran would not produce HEU before 2013 'because of foreseeable technical and programmatic problems'.

It is noteworthy that in February, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) once again verified non-diversion in Iran's nuclear program.

The IAEA report said that it had found no evidence showing that Iran was developing nuclear arms. It said that investigations showed no military aspect in Iran's program.§ionid=...
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