(Updates with U.S. confirmation, recasts)
DUBAI/WASHINGTON Feb 3 Iran was set to receive
the first $550 million installment in previously blocked
overseas funds early this week as part of an interim nuclear
deal, the United States confirmed on Monday.
Iran's official IRNA news agency earlier on Monday reported
the money went into an Iranian Central Bank account in
Switzerland. A U.S. Treasury spokeswoman confirmed the
development by email.
Under a Nov. 24 nuclear agreement, six major powers agreed
to give Iran access to $4.2 billion in its oil revenues frozen
abroad if it carries out the deal. Tehran gets limited sanctions
relief in exchange for steps to curb its nuclear program.
Iran says its nuclear program is solely for peaceful
purposes, such as generating electricity and medical isotopes.
Some payments under the six-month deal - which officially
began Jan. 20 - depend on Iran keeping its commitment to dilute
half of its 20 percent enriched uranium to no more than 5
percent enriched uranium.
Iran cannot get its next installment of $450 million on
March 1 unless the International Atomic Energy Agency confirms
Tehran has done half the necessary dilution of its enriched
uranium, according to a Treasury fact sheet.
(Reporting by Mehrdad Balali in Dubai and Anna Yukhananov in
Washington, Writing by William Maclean, Editing by Ralph Boulton
and Cynthia Osterman)