AFP: A top Iranian lawmaker said here Thursday that Iran would bar international nuclear inspections in its country if debate on its nuclear program is taken up in the UN Security Council.
If the issue goes to the Security Council "there will be no place for any kind of inspections, no continuation of our openness" with IAEA inspectors, Aladdin Broujerdi ... AFP

MOSCOW - A top Iranian lawmaker said here Thursday that Iran would bar international nuclear inspections in its country if debate on its nuclear program is taken up in the UN Security Council.

If the issue goes to the Security Council "there will be no place for any kind of inspections, no continuation of our openness" with IAEA inspectors, Aladdin Broujerdi, chairman of the Iranian parliament's committee on national security and foreign affairs said at a news conference.

The United States has pushed for examination of Iran's nuclear program to be taken up in the Security Council, while Russia reiterated Wednesday that it opposed such a move.

Broujerdi met with a host of top officials in Moscow ahead of a visit by Alexander Rumyantsev, head of Russia's atomic energy agency, to the Bushehr nuclear power station in Iran that Russia is building and that Iran wants to have online by next year.

Rumyantsev could sign an agreement on return to Russia of spent nuclear fuel from the plant during his visit, expected in November, "if commercial issues are resolved by that time," Iran's ambassador to Russia, Gholamreza Shafei, told the press conference.

The United States has opposed the 800 million-dollar plant project over concerns that spent fuel from the plant could be used by Iran to produce low-yield nuclear weapons. Boujerdi said Iran's nuclear program would focus on producing power for civilian use and would include medical and biological research.

"The American argument that we have oil and gas resources and therefore we don't need nuclear power sounds like a joke," Boujerdi said.

"One day the resources will run out and we are responsible to future generations of our people."