Iran injects gas in new centrifuges as atomic deal unravels

Iran’s Ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, Gharib Abadi, waits for the start of the IAEA board of governors meeting at the International Center in Vienna, Austria, Thursday, Nov. 7, 2019. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)

VIENNA (AP) — Iran alleged Thursday that the U.N. inspector it blocked from a nuclear site last week tested positive for suspected traces of explosive nitrates. The U.N.’s nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency, did not immediately comment.

The allegation made by Iranian representative Kazem Gharib Abadi came as Iran injected uranium gas into centrifuges at its underground Fordo nuclear complex early Thursday, taking its most-significant step away from its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

These latest steps by Iran put additional pressure on Europe to offer Tehran a way to sell its crude oil abroad despite the U.S. sanctions imposed on the country since President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew America from the nuclear deal over a year ago.

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Gambrell reported from Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Associated Press writer Matthew Lee in Washington contributed.

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