Iranian state media are reporting that Iran is operating nearly 500 new uranium-enriching centrifuges at its Natanz nuclear facility.

The Islamic Republic News Agency quoted Friday an unnamed source familiar with the program as saying that  the centrifuges are part of 3,000 installed last year at the complex.

On Tuesday, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announced Tehran plans to install 6,000 new centrifuges at Natanz.

Meanwhile, a senior Iranian nuclear official denied Iran is having technical difficulties in expanding its nuclear activities.

Iran currently faces three sets of United Nations Security Council sanctions and international isolation for its refusal to halt uranium enrichment, which can be used in building nuclear weapons.

The United States has accused Iran of secretly trying to develop nuclear weapons. Iran says its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.