Reuters: It may be too late to stop Iran’s nuclear research programme even if the country’s government and parliament wanted to, a top Iranian envoy said on Wednesday in an interview with a Russian radio station. MOSCOW (Reuters) – It may be too late to stop Iran’s nuclear research programme even if the country’s government and parliament wanted to, a top Iranian envoy said on Wednesday in an interview with a Russian radio station.
Gholamreza Shafei, Iran’s ambassador to Moscow, told the Ekho Moskvy radio station that it would be impossible to explain a halt to nuclear research to the Iranian people.
“We are carrying out scientific research and no government in Iran or any Iranian parliament can say to the people of Iran that we have to stop this,” Shafei said when asked about Iran’s resumption of nuclear research.
“Not one state, including Iran, can say that it is stopping scientific research.”
Britain, France and Germany called off talks with Iran after Tehran removed United Nations seals on uranium enrichment equipment, deepening suspicions in the European Union and the United States that Iran is seeking nuclear arms.
Iran, the fourth biggest oil exporter in the world, insists its nuclear scientists are just working on ways to meet booming domestic electricity demand.
Russia has taken a tougher stance against Iran in recent weeks, prompting Shafei to call for Moscow to resist the pressure being brought against it by countries seeking to create “a propagandistic deception”. He did not name the countries.
“We hope that Russia will withstand the pressure that is being brought to bear on it and we see that so far Russia has withstood the pressure being brought against it,” Shafei said.
He said Iran had not rejected a Russian proposal to set up a joint venture to enrich uranium inside Russia for Tehran, adding that the proposal is still on the table.
“We have not refused Russia’s proposal and this is a good initiative,” he said. “The government of Iran is looking carefully at this proposal but naturally this consideration takes time.”