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Iran Announces Construction of Two New Nuclear Reactors

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani announced plans yesterday to build two more nuclear reactors near the one already operating in Bushehr, Iran’s Farsnews reported today.

“Construction of two new power plants will increase the capacity of Bushehr province’s power generation to 2,000 megawatts,” President Rouhani said in a meeting with investors and economic activists in Bushehr province today.

Earlier today, President Rouhani underlined during a visit to the Bushehr nuclear power plant that Iran is pursuing nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, and said, “The Bushehr Nuclear Power Plant is an example showing that Iran is only looking for a civilian use of the nuclear energy and for power generation.”

While the Iranian authorities quoted boasted of the savings that the plants are expected to generate, Iran’s foreign ministry reported a less diplomatic description of Iran’s nuclear efforts in Bushehr, calling it a symbol of “resistance.”

President Rouhani said : Bushehr power plant differs with the nuclear reactors in other countries, since this reactor is the symbol of a nation`s steadfast resistance.

The construction on the two plants is part of a sanctions-busting trade agreement that Iran agreed to with Russia last September. The agreement to purchase eight reactors from Russia and build the two reactors at Bushehr was concluded in November, raising significant concerns that the deal would alleviate Iran from dealing with the punitive element of sanctions.

In 2013, the Gulf states raised concerns with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) over the Bushehr plant after a magnitude 7.7 earthquake struck the region. Iran has brushed off safety concerns about the plant as “baseless.”

The Iranian refusal to stop uranium enrichment and plans to expand the scope of its nuclear program are consistent with statements made by the Iranian leadership at the time of Rouhani’s election in June 2013 that it would not compromise on any element of its nuclear program.

[Photo: WochitGeneralNews / YouTube ]