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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran ready to buy enriched uranium from China

RIA Novosti


TEHRAN, October 26 (RIA Novosti) - Tehran may consider buying uranium for its nuclear research reactor from China, the Iranian foreign minister said on Monday.

"If the Chinese side is ready for dialogue on enriched uranium deliveries, Iran will be ready for cooperation," Manouchehr Mottaki told a news conference.

Asked about an array of proposals from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) concerning uranium deliveries for a research program, he said they were being studied and "Tehran will announce a decision soon."

Talks in Vienna between Iran, the UN and three world powers on its nuclear program ended on Wednesday with a deal involving Iran shipping out its low-enriched uranium to Russia and France. The uranium would be enriched in Russia and then sent to France to prepare it for use in an Iranian reactor.

The Vienna talks, aimed at easing international suspicions of a covert Iranian atomic weapons program, involved Iran, the UN, the U.S., Russia and France.

Iran announced in September that it was building a new nuclear fuel enrichment plant near the city of Qom, some 100 kilometers south of Tehran, which sparked international calls for harsher sanctions against the country.

The announcement has fueled fresh concerns that Iran could conduct covert uranium enrichment activities, and the IAEA demanded that Tehran provide detailed information and access to the new nuclear facility as soon as possible.

Four UN nuclear inspectors arrived in Iran on Sunday to inspect the second uranium enrichment facility being built.

Iran is under three sets of UN Security Council sanctions over its refusal to halt uranium enrichment.

The Islamic Republic has consistently denied it is seeking to make nuclear weapons, but has insisted on its right to a peaceful program aimed at generating electricity.

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