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Jun 05, 2018

Iran Supreme Leader orders preparations to increase country's uranium enrichment capacity

Iran's Supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei has ordered preparations to increase the country's uranium enrichment capacity if the nuclear deal with world powers falls apart following the US withdrawal. In a televised speech, Mr Khamenei listed out several conditions, including protection of Iranian oil sales and safeguarding of trade, for staying in the 2015 deal. He said, if the conditions are not met, Tehran would resume its enrichment of uranium. Mr Khamenei added that limiting Iran's missile work is a dream some that will never come true.

Tensions between Iran and the West have resurged since US President Donald Trump pulled out of the deal. Mr Trump had termed the accord, reached under his predecessor Barack Obama, as deeply flawed. He had said, it did not address Iran's nuclear work beyond 2025 or its role in conflicts in Yemen and Syria.

Though committed to the deal, European powers share Mr Trump's concerns and want broader talks with Iran to address the issues.

Under the accord, Iran's uranium enrichment was strictly limited, removing its ability to produce a nuclear weapon. In exchange, the country received relief from crippling sanctions, most of which were lifted in January 2016.

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