Thursday, February 11, 2010

Ahmadinejad: Iran Now 'Nuclear State'

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clipped from newsmax.com

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad claimed Thursday that Iran has produced its first batch of uranium enriched to a higher level, saying his country will not be bullied by the West into curtailing its nuclear program a day after the U.S. imposed new sanctions.

Ahmadinejad reiterated to hundreds of thousands of cheering Iranians on the anniversary of the 1979 foundation of the Islamic republic that the country was now a "nuclear state," an announcement he's made before. He insisted that Iran had no intention of building nuclear weapons.

David Albright of the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security said that any 20-percent enriched uranium produced just a few days after the start of the process would be "a tiny amount."

Western powers blame Tehran for rejecting an internationally endorsed plan to defuse the situation by having Iran export its low enriched uranium for enrichment abroad and returned as fuel rods for the Tehran reactor.

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