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Iran vows minimal cooperation with IAEA

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Iran says it will only do the minimum required to cooperate with the U.N.’s nuclear watchdog agency.

Tehran officials will only inform the International Atomic Energy Agency of its progress in building its 10 new nuclear enrichment sites 180 days before it injects gas into centrifuges, and not during the construction phase of the plants as the IAEA had demanded, according to media reports.

"According to the safeguards, after installation of equipments and only 180 days ahead of injecting gas into centrifuges … we should inform the IAEA," senior Iranian diplomat Abolfazl Zohrehvand told the official Iranian news agency IRNA. "And we will act within the framework of the safeguard."

The IAEA censured Iran last week for its building of a second nuclear enrichment site in Qom.

Meanwhile, in an interview Dec. 3 with Politico, U.S. House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Rep. Howard Berman (D-Calif.) said he intended to pass the Iran Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act by the end of the year, and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) told Democrats that the bill would come to the floor in the next two weeks.

The legislation would sanction companies that help Iran import or produce refined petroleum, which is seen as potentially having a large impact on Iran’s economy because the country imports 40 percent of its refined petroleum.

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