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Iran receives final Russian nuclear delivery

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Iran has received its final shipment of uranium from Russia, according to Iranian state news.

The receipt of the final five tons of enriched uranium, received on Monday morning, marks an important step in the process of bringing the Bushehr nuclear reactor on line.

“With the arrival of the final shipment, all 82 tons of initial fuel needed for the power plant, together with peripheral equipment, has been shipped from Russia to Iran,” the news agency said.

The Bushehr reactor is at the center of a dispute between Iran, which claims to be developing the reactor for civilian energy use, and a coalition of Western countries that believe it to be part of a clandestine weapons program.

According to a New York Times report, Iran hopes to have the reactor operating at half capacity by this summer, but a representative from Atomstroyexport, the Russian firm handling the deal, urged caution in that assessment.

“It will be necessary to conduct complex work related to preparations for the launch,” said Atomstroyexport spokeswoman Yelena Yesipova, “with security being the top priority.”

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