Iran 'approves' Brazil mediation over nuclear deal

Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad welcomes mediation by Brazil in a nuclear deal with the West.

Iran 'approves' Brazil mediation over nuclear deal

Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad welcomes mediation by Brazil in a nuclear deal with the West.

Ahmadinejad has agreed "in principle" to Brazilian mediation to revive a U.N.-brokered nuclear fuel swap deal with world powers, the semi-official Fars news agency said on Wednesday.

"In a telephone conversation with his Venezuelan counterpart, Ahmadinejad agreed in principle to Brazil's mediation over the nuclear fuel deal," Fars said, quoting a statement issued by Ahmadinejad's office.

The pact conceived in talks conducted by the U.N. nuclear watchdog last October required Iran to ship 1,200 kg (2,646 lb) of its LEU to Russia and France for conversion into fuel for the Tehran Research Reactor, which makes isotopes for cancer treatment.

But the three powers have rejected Iranian demands on the deal.

Some nonpermanent U.N. Security Council members such as Brazil and Turkey have been trying to revive the fuel deal with Iran.

Brazil says it favours reviving a mooted compromise in which Iran could export its uranium to another country in return for nuclear fuel Iran says it needs to keep the Tehran reactor running.

It was not clear whether Ahmadinejad had agreed for the fuel swap to take place in a third country.

"Ahmadinejad also said technical issues (over the deal) should be discussed in Tehran," Fars reported.

Iran says it enriches uranium for civilian applications and that as a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, it has a right to the technology already in the hands of many others.

However, most experts estimate that Israel has at least between 100 and 200 nuclear warheads, largely based on information leaked to the Sunday Times newspaper in the 1980s by Mordechai Vanunu, a former worker at the country's Dimona nuclear reactor.

Israel, which has initiated several wars in the region in its 60-year history, has not denied having nuclear weapons, but has not signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and open its facilities for IAEA perusal.

Israel often threatens Iran an attack over its nuclear sites.

However, the United States is lobbying U.N. Security Council members, to back a fourth round of international sanctions on Iran in the coming weeks, to press it into curbing uranium enrichment.


Agencies

Last Mod: 05 Mayıs 2010, 13:55
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