Iran to participate in nuclear-free Mideast confab

Iran will take part in an international conference on creating a nuclear-free zone in the Middle East. The conference is scheduled for next month.

Iran confirmed last week that it has finished installing centrifuges for enriching uranium at its underground nuclear facility in Fordow.

Kazzem Jalali, a member of the Iranian parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, told the semi-official Iranian news agency FARS that the Islamic Republic is continuing to enrich uranium to 20 percent because it is “needed for Tehran’s [research] reactor and its medical purposes,” such as treating cancer patients.

Twenty percent uranium enrichment is considered to be close to the capacity needed to build a nuclear device. — jta