Iran state television names suspect in Natanz nuclear facility attack

2019 by the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran shows centrifuge machines in the Natanz uranium enrichment facility in central Iran. The facility lost power Sunday

China urges U.S. to return to JCPOA immediately, unconditionally

The incidents cast a shadow over talks in Vienna aimed at salvaging the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers which was abandoned by former United States president Donald Trump nearly three years ago. The talks come at a tense time, with Iran yesterday announcing it would increase uranium enrichment nearer to levels needed to make an atomic bomb.

The announcement comes after an attack this past weekend that damaged centrifuges, which is suspected of having been carried out by Israel.

While 60% is higher than any level Iran previously enriched uranium, it is still lower than weapons-grade levels of 90%.

"We do not support, and do not think it's at all helpful, that Iran is saying it's going to move to enrich to 60%".

President Joe Biden on Friday said Iran's decision to enrich uranium at 60% is not helpful and counter to the agreement the countries made under the Iran nuclear deal, but said he is pleased the country continues to engage in indirect talks with the United States. "We need now more detailed work".

Wang called on all parties to the deal to remove all disturbances and speed up the negotiation process to hash out an arrangement for the US and Iran to resume compliance with it.

Interpol, based in Lyon, France, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Iran's deputy foreign minister and head of the delegation to Vienna, Abbas Araghchi, said Saturday that there were "good discussions" in the session and that "a new understanding is being formed". It said the suspect had fled Iran before last Sunday's blast that the Islamic Republic has blamed on arch-foe Israel.

Iran insists its nuclear program is peaceful, though the West and the IAEA say Tehran had an organised military nuclear program up until the end of 2003.

"The enrichment of uranium to 60 percent is underway" in Natanz, he was quoted by Tasnim news agency as saying.

"Iran's "seriousness of purpose" in pursuing diplomacy was tested in the three years since Trump withdrew from the nuclear accord".

Israel is adamant that Iran is seeking the bomb - with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu saying Iran is duping the global community as it pursues its rogue program - and Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi vowed Friday that Israel will do whatever it takes to "definitely" prevent Iran attaining nuclear weapons.

An annual U.S. intelligence report released on Tuesday maintained the American assessment that "Iran is not now undertaking the key nuclear weapons-development activities that we judge would be necessary to produce a nuclear device".

But the Islamic Republic now has no such ships in its navy.

The threat of higher enrichment by Iran already had drawn criticism from the USA and three European nations in the deal - France, Germany and the United Kingdom.

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