Jeffrey LewisParis Negotiations Update 18: UF4 Production to continue until February

Remember a couple of weeks ago when Iran nearly scuppered its accord with the EU-3 over its continued production of uranium tetraflouride (UF-4), which may have been considered “feed material” for highly enriched uranium? (No? Read my post dated 10 November 2004)

Anyway, after some wrangling the Europeans got “basically … a full suspension,” a diplomat told AP. “It’s what the Europeans were looking for.” (ACW, 14 November 2004).


Although the accord required Iran to freeze all enrichment activity by November 22, it allowed Iran to complete some uranium conversion work begun before the suspension took effect.

Now Iran says that work, to convert 37 tons of yellowcake undergoing “testing” at Isfahan, will take until February.

Reaction to the timetable was not positive. Working into February “would certainly violate the spirit of the agreement,” a Western diplomat told Reuters. “Iran has a legal basis for doing it, but it will not inspire much confidence in them,” another diplomat said.