Iran denies agreeing to ship enriched uranium to Russia
Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov. 4
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Marziyeh Afkham rejected a New York Times report about Iranian officials' agreement to ship huge part of its enriched uranium to Russia, Iran's Fars news agency reported Nov. 4.
The New York Times reported on Nov. 3 that Iran has tentatively agreed to ship much of its huge stockpile of uranium to Russia if it reaches a broader nuclear deal with the West.
Under the proposed agreement, the Russians would convert the uranium into specialized fuel rods for the Bushehr nuclear power plant, Iran's only commercial reactor, according to The New York Times.
Afkham emphasized, "none of the speculations made by some foreign media which are usually driven by special political intentions are true."
She accused the NYT of disturbing the present political atmosphere of the negotiations, ahead of the new round of nuclear talks.
Iran and P5+1 will hold the next round of nuclear negotiations in Omani capital city of Muscat on Nov.11.
A trilateral meeting of Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, US Secretary of State John Kerry and outgoing EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton is also scheduled for Nov. 9-10 in the same city.
Earlier Iranian deputy foreign minister, Abbas Araqchi said that the two issues regarding uranium enrichment and sanctions will be discussed in trilateral meetings.
Zarif, Kerry and Ashton had trilateral meetings on Oct. 14-16 and discussed disputed issues such as uranium enrichment extent, ways of lifting imposed sanctions and duration of the agreement.
Last November, Iran and the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany) clinched an interim nuclear accord, which took effect on Jan. 20 and expired six months later. However, the parties agreed to extend their talks until Nov. 24 as they remained divided on a number of key issues.