Iran announces nuclear advances but offers new talks

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Iran proclaimed advances in nuclear know-how, including new centrifuges able to enrich uranium much faster, a move that may heighten its confrontation with the West over suspicions it is seeking the means to make atomic bombs.

Tehran’s determination to pursue a nuclear program showed no sign of wavering despite Western sanctions that are inflicting increasing damage on its oil-based economy.

“The era of bullying nations has passed. The arrogant powers cannot monopolize nuclear technology. They tried to prevent us by issuing sanctions and resolutions but failed,” President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said in a television broadcast on Wednesday.

“Our nuclear path will continue.”

But Iran’s Arabic-language Al Alam television said the government had handed a letter to EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton expressing readiness to “hold new talks over its nuclear program in a constructive way.”

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