[ti:Iran Says It Will Break 2015 Nuclear Deal Limit on Uranium]
[00:00.12]Iran says it plans to go beyond limits placed on its uranium enrichment in the next 10 days.
[00:09.20]The limit was set in the 2015 nuclear agreement with world powers.
[00:16.64]A spokesman for Iran's atomic energy agency, Behrouz Kamalvandi,
[00:24.12]made the statement while speaking to reporters on state-operated television.
[00:31.16]He said, "Today the countdown to pass the 300 kilograms
[00:37.56]reserve of enriched uranium has started and in 10 days' time..." the limit will be passed.
[00:47.61]Kamalvandi said that Iran had already increased its uranium production
[00:54.88]to four times of what it had been before.
[00:59.28]He said this increase was "based on the country's needs."
[01:05.44]Under the 2015 deal, Iran agreed
[01:10.48]to keep no more than 300 kilograms of "low-enrichment uranium."
[01:18.20]When it is highly enriched, uranium can be used as a fuel for nuclear weapons.
[01:26.40]The country is believed to have had 10,000 kilograms of uranium
[01:33.20]with a higher enrichment level before the agreement.
[01:39.12]U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew the U.S. from the agreement last year
[01:46.24]saying it did not do enough to prevent Iran from gaining nuclear weapons.
[01:53.88]The Trump administration also has noted Iran's support of conflicts
[02:00.60]in Syria and Yemen and of extremist groups such as Hezbollah and Hamas.
[02:09.56]Since withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal,
[02:13.52]the U.S. has again placed strong international economic restrictions on Iran.
[02:22.04]The other parties to the agreement, Britain, China, France, Russia
[02:29.24]and Germany are still trying to save the deal with Iran.
[02:35.92]On Monday, Iran's President Hassan Rouhani met with France's new ambassador to Tehran.
[02:46.96]He warned that time was running out for the deal.
[02:52.84]"The current situation is very critical and France and the other parties to the (deal)
[03:00.92]still have a very limited opportunity to play their historic role
[03:07.20]for saving the deal," Rouhani said in a statement on his website.
[03:14.92]Iran also set a July 7 date for European powers to come up with an agreement
[03:23.48]to save the deal, or it would move away from the agreement,
[03:29.52]likely meaning it would increase enrichment further.
[03:34.80]Iran's plan to increase uranium production comes as debate continues
[03:43.32]over the attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman last week.
[03:51.80]The United States says Iranian forces carried out the attack,
[03:58.00]but details of the attack are being disputed.
[04:02.72]On Sunday, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on television
[04:09.64]that he blamed Iran for the attacks saying,
[04:14.12]"These were attacks by the Islamic Republic of Iran on commercial shipping..."
[04:21.56]Pompeo went on to "guarantee freedom of navigation" through the Straits of Hormuz.
[04:29.56]He said the U.S. does not want war with Iran,
[04:34.24]but will ensure that world oil supplies can pass through the important waterway.
[04:43.32]Iran's Armed Forces Chief of Staff, Major General Mohammad Baqeri,
[04:50.56]denied on Monday that Iran was behind the attacks on the tankers.
[04:58.20]He said if Iran decided to block shipping in the Strait of Hormuz,
[05:04.96]it would do so publicly.
[05:08.93]I'm Mario Ritter, Jr. 更多聽力請訪問51VOA.COM