Iranian President Hassan Rouhani announced plans to build two new nuclear power plants in Iran. Photo: Iranian government.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani announced on Tuesday plans to construct two new nuclear power plants to increase the country’s nuclear-generated power output, Iran’s Fars News Agency reported.

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

Earlier on Tuesday, Rouhani visited the Bushehr nuclear power plant and said the country is pursuing nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. He explained, “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.” However, the US-based group The Israel Project claims Iranians will use their new nuclear infrastructure as a boost to their “leverage” against the West.

“The more they have, the more they have to trade away,” the group said on Wednesday. “The JPOA was designed to freeze Iran’s program in place so they couldn’t amass leverage and improve their position during negotiations. It didn’t: the Iranians were allowed unlimited enrichment up to 3.5 percent as long as they keep it on the shelf as oxide, unlimited work on their plutonium track as long as they don’t touch their Arak reactor, and unlimited work on ballistic missiles. But it was supposed to.”

The Bushehr nuclear power plant adds 1,000 megawatts of electricity to Iran’s national grid when operating at full capacity, the Fars News Agency reported. Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Ali Akbar Salehi said in October that the power plant will save Iran $1 billion worth of fossil fuel each year.

Rouhani’s announcement on Tuesday follows an agreement reached in March between Russia’s Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation and the AEOI to construct at least two more nuclear power plants in Bushehr. On Wednesday, US Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian chief negotiator Javad Zarif met in Geneva to discuss Iran’s nuclear program.

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Source:: The Algemeiner


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