Moscow urges Iran to respond to IAEA concerns

February 27th, 2012 - 6:33 pm ICT by IANS  

Moscow, Feb 27 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Russia wants Iran to answer all existing questions from the UN nuclear watchdog International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) over its controversial nuclear programme.

Russia believes such a move will confirm its right to peaceful atomic energy generation, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Monday.

“It is very important that everybody confirms firmly and without any reservations that if Iran takes all existing issues of concern for the IAEA off the table, it will have all the rights that nuclear-free member states of the non-proliferation treaty have, including the right to enrich uranium to produce fuel,” Lavrov said.

Russia wants to be “sure” that the Islamic Republic’s nuclear programme has a “purely peaceful dimension,” he added.

Tensions over Iranian nuclear activities have risen to boiling point over the past few weeks since Tehran announced mid-January that it had begun enriching uranium in the heavily fortified Fordow mountain bunker.

Iran has threatened to block the Strait of Hormuz, a strategic waterway along its coastline through which one-fifth of the world’s oil flows, as Western powers increased pressure on the Islamic Republic.

The European Union has banned Iranian oil imports starting from July and the US is introducing new sanctions against Tehran.

–IANS/RIA Novosti
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