May 16, 2006, RFE -- Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov today said Russia and China will not support the use of force against Iran over its nuclear program.
Lavrov made his remarks in Beijing after meeting with his Chinese counterpart Li Zhaoxing. He said Moscow and Beijing won't vote for any resolution that "is an excuse for the use of force" against Iran. He said both sides advocate dialogue to resolve the dispute.
Earlier, China said it supports Europe's initiative to resolve the standoff. The statement came after the European Union said it was ready to offer Iran sophisticated civilian nuclear technology if it agreed to halt all uranium enrichment on its soil.
But Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Assefi today reiterated it was not interested in the offer.
The EU and the United States, despite Tehran's denials, suspect Iran of trying to develop nuclear weapons.
(ITAR-TASS, AFP, AP, Reuters)
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