In reaction to former President Donald Trump’s exit from the pact in 2018, Iran has violated much of the limits set by a 2015 agreement on its nuclear activities. At indirect talks in Vienna this week, the two countries set out tough positions on how to get them back into full compliance with the agreement.
A live video link broadcast on state television shows Rouhani ordering the injection of uranium gas into 164 IR-6 centrifuges, 30 IR-5 centrifuges, and mechanical experiments on IR-9 machines with the capability of 50 early IR-1 machines – a possible new violation of the nuclear pact.
According to state television, the ceremony announced 133 achievements in the country’s nuclear industry over the past year, mainly in the fields of medicine, electricity, agriculture, and oil.
“Once again, I stress that all our nuclear activities are peaceful and for non-military purposes,” Rouhani said in televised remarks.
“We continue to be committed to our pledge to NPT (non-proliferation treaty) and to the world not to deviate militarily from our nuclear programme,” Rouhani said.
The talks in Vienna, in which European Union officials are shuttling between the remaining parties to the deal and the United States, aim to restore the bargain at the core of the agreement – restrictions on Iran’s nuclear activities in exchange for the lifting of U.S. and other international sanctions.
The United States was the first to renege on that bargain under Trump, who vehemently opposed the deal and sought to wreck it. He pulled out, reimposed the sanctions that were lifted, and brought in many more. Iran responded by breaching many of the nuclear restrictions.