Following are excerpts from an interview with Alaeddin Boroujerdi, chairman of the Iranian Parliamentary Committee for Foreign Policy and National Security, which aired on Al-Alam TV on November 25, 2013:
Alaeddin Boroujerdi: [The nuclear deal] is very important, because by now, the Islamic Republic controls all aspects of nuclear science, from A-Z, from the very beginning all the way to uranium enrichment. This is why the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution talked about heroic flexibility. After ten years, we have emerged victorious over the West.
They wanted to prevent us from acquiring nuclear technology, but we have reached that point, having sacrificed martyrs, and having persevered on that path, enduring an economic siege. Now we have emerged victorious heroes. It was in our best interest to sign this agreement.
The Americans reached the conclusion that it would be futile to continue with their policy of confronting the Islamic Republic – a policy that was leading them nowhere. They wanted to prevent Iran from enriching uranium, but we have attained this technology and we are currently using it. Therefore, the Americans changed their policy from confronting Islamic Iran to dealing with it.
We have now entered a new stage. We expect good results. The nuclear dossier will be removed from the agenda of the UN Security Council, and they will officially acknowledge... In fact, they have acknowledged Iran's uranium enrichment.
In addition, the economic siege on the Islamic Republic will be lifted.
If Congress places more sanctions, we will not confirm the agreement and will not abide by our commitments.
The U.S. President can overrule any decision by Congress. They said that they did not recognize our right to enrich uranium, but at the same time, they say that Iran agreed not to enrich above 5%. This constitutes an official acknowledgement of that percentage. They officially recognized that. We consider this to be a great victory for Iran, and the beginning of a new phase for the Islamic Republic.
Iran has become an official member of the international club of the countries that make peaceful use of nuclear energy.
Interviewer: In addition, in several places in the agreement, the English text of which was made available today, the Iranian "nuclear program" is mentioned. I believe that this also constitutes an implied reference to enrichment, since enrichment is a fundamental component of any nuclear program.
Alaeddin Boroujerdi: Uranium enrichment is the basis for everything. Without enrichment, we cannot operate in the [nuclear] field, we cannot have a UCF project, we cannot produce UF6 gas. Without it, there would be no facilities at Fordo and Natanz. All these facilities are meant to enable uranium enrichment. Our discussions with the Americans focused on uranium enrichment, and since they signed [the deal], they agreed to that.
In Arak, we have a heavy-water plant, which has been active for years. The IAEA is aware of this, and there is no problem with it. In addition, it should be noted that the nuclear facility in Tehran is old. This plant has been producing medicine for 800,000 people for the past 40 years. It was built by the Americans. We want to build a new plant, eight times greater in capacity than the Tehran reactor. The new reactor will be a 40-megawatt plant.
The agreement stresses that we must not take any new steps. For example, we have 19,000 centrifuges, and we are not allowed to install new ones.
Interviewer: Will these centrifuges continue to operate?
Alaeddin Boroujerdi: Yes. The heavy-water plant will be under IAEA supervision and inspection. They can use cameras and other means.
Interviewer: What about the facility in Fordo, near the holy city of Qom?
Alaeddin Boroujerdi: The purpose of the Fordo facility is to protect the nuclear infrastructure from a possible aerial attack by America or Israel. It is buried deep in the mountain, and cannot be harmed in any way. There are 19,000 centrifuges in Fordo. We will not add any new centrifuges, but the ones that are there will remain active.