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Iran warns against air attack

world Updated: Nov 24, 2009 00:47 IST

AFP
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Iran’s envoy to the UN atomic watchdog said on Wednesday that Tehran wants a guaranteed supply of fuel for a research reactor as a military chief warned that any attack on its nuclear sites would be crushed.

Ali Asghar Soltanieh, envoy to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), reiterated that Tehran is ready for further talks on supplying fuel for the internationally supervised reactor in the capital.

“The main issue is how to get a guarantee for the timely supply of fuel which Iran needs,” Soltanieh said.

“We are ready to have negotiations with a positive approach, but because of lack of confidence with the West, we need to have those guarantees.”

He spoke days after the Islamic republic rejected a deal brokered by the IAEA which proposed that Tehran send most of its stock of low-enriched uranium (LEU) to Russia and France for conversion into fuel for the research reactor.

Iran dismissed the deal but said it was ready for a simultaneous exchange inside the country of its LEU for nuclear fuel supplied by the West.

Western powers strongly back the IAEA-drafted deal as they fear Iran could further enrich its LEU for use in making atomic weapons, a charge vociferously denied by Tehran.