It has been revealed that Iran is set to begin construction of a second nuclear power station.
According to the head of the country’s Atomic Energy Organisation, Fereydoun Abbassi Davani, work on the new 1,000 megawatt plant will begin next year and will be completed by March 2014.
It will be built close to an existing nuclear facility in the southern city of Bushehr, which was officially opened in September last year.
Construction of the first plant began in 1975, but was temporarily halted as a result of the Islamic Revolution.
The announcement – on the same day as the opening session of Iran’s parliament – comes after world powers recently met in Baghdad to discuss the country’s nuclear programme.
There are concerns that Iran is seeking to develop a nuclear weapon. A further round of talks will be held in Moscow next month.
A recent report from the IAEA said satellite images showed “extensive activities,” which it suspects may be used for nuclear weapon experiments.
Iranian officials have refused access to the site, south-east of Tehran, saying it is a military area. They claim the UN nuclear watchdog has not given sufficient justification to visit the location.