Iran Claims Full Control Over Process Of Producing Nuclear Fuel - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Iran Claims Full Control Over Process Of Producing Nuclear Fuel

TEHRAN, Iran - Iran is claiming to have reached a milestone in its nuclear capabilities on the eve of talks on the program with six world powers.

Iran's nuclear chief says the country has produced its first batch of locally mined uranium ore for enrichment, making it independent of foreign countries for a process the West fears is
geared toward producing nuclear arms.

Western officials are downplaying the announcement. They say it was expected and Iran does not have enough ore to maintain the large-scale enrichment program that Tehran says it is building as a source of fuel for a network of nuclear reactors. National Security Council spokesman Mike Hammer says the announcement raises more questions about Iran's intentions "at a time when Iran needs to address the concerns of the international community."

A senior diplomat from a member nation of the International Atomic Energy Agency says the Iranian claims of domestic reserves are thought to be exaggerated.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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