ISIS Iran Report

Salehi Says Sanctions May Slow Iran’s Nuclear Program; Lacks Measuring Equipment

July 7, 2010

In a somewhat surprising detour from the official line, the head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, Ali Akbar Salehi, said today that United Nations sanctions could slow Iran’s nuclear program, and in particular, the enrichment program.  Salehi said he expected no problems at the Bushehr reactor site, which Russia is building for Iran and plans to open in September.  However, he said, “…On the issue of enrichment, we may face problems with some equipment such as measuring instruments,” and indicated Iran would manufacture them if necessary. 

This startling admission about Iran’s shortage of measuring equipment for the enrichment program comes one day after a Canadian court convicted a man who was working for Iran to obtain pressure transducers, equipment with applications in measuring the gas pressure inside centrifuge cascades.  Iran has reportedly sought this equipment worldwide in recent months, approaching companies located in the United States, Canada, Europe, China, and Taiwan.  Most requests have been denied due to UN sanctions.  Yet, given Salehi’s admission about a shortage, companies around the world which sell pressure transducers and other measuring devices relevant to uranium enrichment should remain especially vigilant about new and more deceptive Iranian attempts to procure them. 

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