Iran turns down IAEA new offer
Iran again turned down an offer by the UN nuclear watchdog requiring the country to ship its enriched uranium to neighboring Turkey, the satellite Press TV reported on Sunday.
Tehran said such an offer had already been made by the chief of International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and was rejected by Iran then, Xinhua reported.
"This proposal which was made by the chief of IAEA long time ago was rejected by Iranian authorities at the time," the report quoted an unnamed source as saying.
"It seems the IAEA chief is trying to take advantage of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's (forthcoming) visit to Turkey to gain media coverage on a closed issue," the source said on condition of anonymity.
In his new offer, the IAEA head Mohamed ElBaradei said Saturday that Iran's enriched uranium could be transferred to Turkey until Russia supplies Tehran with high-enriched uranium.
He has offered Turkey as a third country after Iran refused the West's proposal that the uranium be enriched in Russia; "It should work," ElBaradei said during a television interview.
A senior member of Iranian parliament said Saturday that Iran will not exchange its own enriched uranium for fuel to supply a research reactor in Tehran, local ISNA news agency reported.
The draft agreement, presented earlier by IAEA chief, called for shipping most of Iran's existing low-grade enriched uranium to Russia and France, where it would be processed into fuel rods with a purity of 20 percent.
The United States, Russia and France have approved the draft deal, but Iran said it wanted amendments and more talks on the issue.