The Latest: Germany says Iran risking entire nuclear deal

Demonstrators hold an anti-U.S. banner as they stand on a makeshift U.S. flag during an annual rally in front of the former U.S. Embassy in Tehran, Iran, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019. Reviving decades-old cries of “Death to America,” Iran on Monday marked the 40th anniversary of the 1979 student takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran and the 444-day hostage crisis that followed as tensions remain high over the country’s collapsing nuclear deal with world powers. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi)

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — The Latest on developments in Iran as the country marks the anniversary of the U.S. Embassy takeover 40 years ago (all times local):

6:30 p.m.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas says Iran’s latest step away from its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers risks completely breaking the entire agreement.

Maas said Iran’s decision Monday to operate a greater number of advanced centrifuges “unacceptable.”

Speaking to reporters in Hungary, he said “ultimately Iran is doing nothing less than putting the entire nuclear agreement at risk.”

Iran has said its centrifuge decision is a direct result of U.S. President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the agreement more than a year ago.

Maas added that Germany expects Iran to “return to full compliance with the commitments” made in the deal.

Under the accord, Tehran limited its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions.

But since the deal collapsed, European nations have been unable to give Iran a way to help it sell its oil abroad as it faces renewed U.S. sanctions.

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5:00 p.m.

The European Union says it’s still committed to Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, even as that deal continues to collapse following U.S. President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the agreement.

Maja Kocijancic, a spokeswoman for the European Commission, said Monday that the deal “is a matter of our security, not just the region or Europe but globally.” But she says the EU’s commitment to the deal “depends on the full compliance by Iran.”

Earlier Monday, Iran broke further from the agreement by announcing it’s doubling the number of advanced centrifuges it operates. The announcement comes on the 40th anniversary of the 1979 U.S. Embassy takeover in Tehran.

Iran has previously taken steps away from the accord try to pressure Europe to offer a new deal. But so far, European nations have been unable to give Iran a way to help it sell its oil abroad as it faces strict U.S. sanctions.

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2:15 p.m.

The head of Iran’s nuclear program says that Tehran is working on a prototype centrifuge that’s 50 times faster than those allowed under the nuclear deal with world powers.

The comments by Ali Akbar Salehi on Monday came as Iranians mark the 40th anniversary of the 1979 U.S. Embassy takeover and start of the 444-day hostage crisis.

Salehi says the prototype is called an IR-9 and that it would be as 50-times faster than the first-generation IR-1s allowed under the accord.

The nuclear deal limited Iran to using only 5,060 first-generation IR-1 centrifuges to enrich uranium by rapidly spinning uranium hexafluoride gas.

Salehi earlier in the same state TV interview said that Tehran is now operating 60 IR-6 advanced centrifuges in violation of its atomic deal with world powers. That’s double the amount previously known.

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2 p.m.

The head of Iran’s nuclear program says Tehran is now operating 60 IR-6 advanced centrifuges in violation of its atomic deal with world powers.

The comments by Ali Akbar Salehi mean that Iran is now operating double the amount of advanced centrifuges than was previously known.

Salehi made the announcement to state TV on the 40th anniversary of the takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran.

An IR-6 centrifuge can produce enriched uranium 10 times as fast as the first-generation IR-1s allowed under the accord.

The nuclear deal limited Iran to using only 5,060 first-generation IR-1 centrifuges to enrich uranium by rapidly spinning uranium hexafluoride gas.

By starting up these advanced centrifuges, Iran further cuts into the one-year time limit that experts estimate Tehran would need to have enough material to build a nuclear weapon, if it chose to pursue one.

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10 a.m.

Iran has begun commemorating the 40th anniversary of the 1979 student takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran and the subsequent 444-day hostage crisis.

Among the events planned in Tehran on Monday is a rally by hard-liners at the former embassy and an address by Iranian army commander Gen. Abdolrahim Mousavi. State TV says rallies also will take place in nearly 1,000 cities and towns across Iran.

The anniversary this year comes amid tensions heightened to a level unseen since the hostage crisis after President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew the U.S. from Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers and re-imposed sanctions on Tehran.

Islamist students seized the embassy in 1979 after Washington allowed ousted Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi to travel to the U.S. for medical treatment.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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