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Iran to Ratify NPT Protocol

Iran said yesterday it is drafting a bill to ratify the Additional Protocol of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), but claimed at the same time that part of its uranium enrichment will be resumed.

"The Foreign Ministry has started preparing a draft bill on the ratification of the additional protocol, which will be presented to the state commission for scrutiny and then, if approved, to the Majlis (Parliament)," Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid-Reza Asefi said.

Asefi also affirmed that Iran will resume some work on its nuclear fuel process. "The decision has been made and we are to restart some activities at the uranium conversion facility in Isfahan."

Iran, currently in talks with the European Union on its nuclear issue, suspended uranium enrichment last November, but claimed the suspension is a voluntary and revocable move. Iran signed the additional protocol in December 2003 but the hardliner-dominated Majlis has not approved it so far.

The United States accuses Iran of developing nuclear weapons secretly, a charge dismissed by Teheran as politically motivated.

(China Daily May 9, 2005)


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