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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

G8 leaders acknowledge Russia's position on Iran - Medvedev's aide

RIA Novosti

01:35 27/06/2010 HUNTSVILLE (CANADA), June 27 (RIA Novosti) - Russian President Dmitry Medvedev explained in detail Russia's position on Iran, including its opposition to new unilateral sanctions against the Islamic Republic, to participants at the G8 summit in Canada, Medvedev's aide has said.

"Russia managed to get its position on Iran across [to participants in the summit]. The G8 partners acknowledge our position," Arkady Dvorkovych told Russian journalists on Saturday.

Russia considers it necessary to "combine sanctions against Iran... stipulated by a relevant UN Security Council's resolution with simultaneous diplomatic actions aimed at involving Tehran in concrete talks on its nuclear program," he said, adding the G8 leaders support this approach.

The UN Security Council approved on June 9 the fourth round of economic sanctions against Iran over its controversial nuclear activities, including tougher financial controls and an expanded arms embargo.

Following the resolution, the United States and the European Union also announced that they were imposing new sanctions on Iran.

Medvedev has criticized the decisions by saying unilateral sanctions may only aggravate the current situation and inflict damage upon the dialogue with Tehran.

Western powers suspect Iran of attempting to build nuclear weapons under the guise of peaceful energy generation. Tehran has strongly denied the allegations, saying it needs enriched uranium to produce medical isotopes.

Earlier this month, the Iranian parliament passed a bill directing the government to scale down its cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) following the imposition of the sanctions.

Iran's nuclear chief Ali Akbar Salehi said on Wednesday that the country had produced 17 kilograms of 20%-enriched uranium and could produce as much as it needed.

Turkey and Brazil have brokered a deal in which Iran is to swap its uranium in Turkey for fuel to use in a Tehran research reactor.

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