Thursday, 01 February 2007

PEACEFUL IRAN NUCLEAR PROGRAM CAN BE GUARANTEED -- PUTIN

Published in News Digest

By empty (2/1/2007 issue of the CACI Analyst)

Russia\'s president said Thursday there are ways of ensuring Iran\'s right to develop civilian nuclear power, while eliminating international concerns on the issue. \"It is necessary to find a scenario for the development of [Iran\'s] nuclear industry that would, on the one hand, fully guarantee Iran\'s access [to nuclear technology] and on the other, address any concerns within the international community,\" Vladimir Putin told an annual televised news conference in the Kremlin. \"Such options exist, and Mr.
Russia\'s president said Thursday there are ways of ensuring Iran\'s right to develop civilian nuclear power, while eliminating international concerns on the issue. \"It is necessary to find a scenario for the development of [Iran\'s] nuclear industry that would, on the one hand, fully guarantee Iran\'s access [to nuclear technology] and on the other, address any concerns within the international community,\" Vladimir Putin told an annual televised news conference in the Kremlin. \"Such options exist, and Mr. Mohamed ElBaradei [Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)] is proposing them,\" he said, adding that the Iranian people have the right to access modern technology, including nuclear technology. \"As you know, we are cooperating with Iran in peaceful nuclear activities, building a nuclear power plant in Bushehr. We intend to pursue this program in the future,\" Putin said. Russia, a key economic partner of Iran, has consistently supported the country\'s right to nuclear power under the Non-Proliferation Treaty, despite international accusations that the Islamic Republic aims to direct its nuclear program toward building weapons. In response to Iran\'s unwillingness to give up its nuclear ambitions, the UN Security Council adopted Resolution 1737 last December, which provided for sanctions against Iran banning activities involving uranium enrichment, chemical reprocessing, heavy water-based projects, and the production of nuclear weapons delivery systems. Tehran responded to the resolution by saying it would review its cooperation with the IAEA and on January 23 barred 38 IAEA experts from inspecting Iran\'s nuclear facilities. The IAEA is expected to file a new report on Iran\'s nuclear program February 23. (RIA Novosti)
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