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Russian nuclear proposal has problems: Iran

A senior Iranian official on Monday dismissed a proposal to enrich uranium on Russian soil as problematic and expressed disappointment in Europe's latest negotiations over the Islamic Republic's controversial nuclear program.

world Updated: Jan 02, 2006 04:14 IST

A senior Iranian official on Monday dismissed a proposal to enrich uranium on Russian soil as problematic and expressed disappointment in Europe's latest negotiations over the Islamic Republic's controversial nuclear program.

"It is an idea, not a structured proposal, we don't see it as mature and it has serious problems," the secretary of the country's Supreme National Security Council, Ali Larijani, said on national television.

The Russian proposal sought to overcome the key sticking point in talks between Iran and the European Union over the program, which the United States believes is a cover for nuclear weapons ambitions.

Moscow has suggested allowing Iran to conduct uranium enrichment in Russia, giving the country access to the nuclear fuel cycle while guaranteeing its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes.

Iran has denied it is seeking to build a nuclear bomb and says it is seeking only to produce electricity.

However, Larijani did not completely reject the Russian proposal.

"The (Russian) plan could be complementary and supporting, there are technological benefits, we have to examine them. It is not rigid and there is room for maneuver," he said.

Russia enjoys close ties with Iran and is helping build the Bushehr nuclear power plant in southern Iran.

First Published: Jan 02, 2006 04:14 IST