Dubai - Iran said on Sunday it would further scale back its commitment to the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, raising its uranium enrichment level beyond agreed levels to produce fuel for power plants.
The announcement, confirming what Reuters reported on Saturday, signaled a growing challenge to escalating U.S. sanctions pressure.
In a news conference, senior Iranian officials said Tehran would keep reducing its commitments every 60 days, unless signatories of the pact moved to protect it from U.S. sanctions, but they left the door open to diplomacy.
Before the deal was sealed, Iran produced 20% enriched uranium needed to fuel its Tehran reactor and the level of enrichment for its southern Bushehr nuclear power plant was 5%.
"We will enrich uranium based on our needs ... right now we don't need to enrich uranium needed for Tehran reactor," said Behrouz Kamalvandi, Iran's Atomic Energy Organization spokesman.