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05/26/10

Iran Calls on Russia, US to Accept Nuclear Deal

Source: VOA

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has called on Russia and the United States to accept a nuclear fuel swap deal, warning that it will be the last chance to resolve the nuclear stand off. During a televised speech Wednesday, Mr. Ahmadinejad said the swap is a great opportunity for U.S. President Barack Obama.


from left: Brazil's FM & President, Iran's FM & President, Turkey's PM & FM celebrate signing of the nuclear fuel swap agreement : 10-point nuclear deal between Iran, Turkey and Brazil

Mr. Ahmadinejad also criticized Russia's support for more sanctions against Iran.

On Monday, Iran submitted a letter to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) outlining a plan to send 1,200 kilograms of low-enriched uranium to Turkey in exchange for higher-grade fuel for a medical research reactor in Tehran.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told reporters in Beijing Tuesday that there are a "number of deficiencies" in the plan that do not address concerns raised by the international community.  She called the deal a "transparent ploy" to avoid Security Council action.

New British Prime Minister David Cameron told parliament Tuesday that he believes it is time to increase the pressure on Iran.  He said his government has "a clear objective to ensure stronger U.N. and EU sanctions against Iran."

The U.S., China and Britain are three of the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council.  All five approved a draft resolution for a fourth round of sanctions on Iran for its nuclear program.

Iran says its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes, but the United States and its allies accuse Tehran of trying to build a nuclear weapon.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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