(RIA Novosti) - Russia sees no reason to raise tensions around the long-running Iranian nuclear issue, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Wednesday.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Tuesday on national television that the Islamic Republic had successfully enriched uranium to a degree sufficient for use in nuclear power plants, but insisted it had no ambitions to develop nuclear weapons.
Lavrov told reporters: "I would not jump to hasty conclusions, as tensions are raised too often around Iran's nuclear issue."
He said he hoped a visit to Iran by the head of International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the UN's nuclear watchdog, would help resolve the long-running impasse, and that the problem could not be dealt with by military means.
"As for an increase in the possibility of a military solution to the problem [following Ahmadinejad's announcement], I am sure there is none," he said. "All countries agree with Russia on that."
IAEA head Mohammed ElBaradei is scheduled to visit Iran April 12-13. The agency remains the key to keeping tabs on Iran's nuclear ambitions, Lavrov said, and so far has yet to say the Islamic Republic's controversial program poses a threat.
"Our task is to prevent Iran from violating the nuclear non-proliferation regime," he said. "The IAEA has not yet established such a threat from Iran, but it continues to check the remaining issues."
The UN Security Council, which has the power to impose punitive measures on countries found to be in breach of their international obligations, issued a resolution March 29 urging Iran to re-impose a moratorium on uranium enrichment, and gave ElBaradei a month to prepare a report.
Lavrov said that any plans to attack Iran would only aggravate the current situation.
"If such plans do exist they will not help resolve this problem but will create new [conflict] areas in the region," he said, apparently in reference to media reports that the United States was considering a tactical strike on Iran, possibly using nuclear weapons.
Lavrov added that Russia, the U.S. and the EU-3 of Britain, France and Germany agreed that the long-running impasse should be solved by diplomatic and political means.
"Iran has never claimed that it was aiming to create nuclear weapons," he said. "It has announced its intention to develop nuclear energy for peaceful purposes."