'Iran hasn't yet produced any nuclear fuel,' announced Iranian Ambassador to Russia Gholam Reza Shafei yesterday at a press conference in Moscow. The ambassador added that Iranian uranium enrichment plants are also not functioning yet. 'We are trying hard to bring our technology up to production standard, though,' he said.
The ambassador stressed that Iran was trying to supply the Bushehr nuclear power station with domestically produced fuel, although its contract with Russia states that it has to buy fuel from Russia for the first ten years of the power station's life. 'We have the right,' said the ambassador.
In response to US and European fears that, in addition to its civilian programmes, Iran is trying to develop a military programme to produce weapons of mass destruction, Shafei said that Iranian production was being overseen by the IAEA. He also said that Iran was a signatory of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty. 'This agreement gives all countries the right to use atomic energy for peaceful purposes, and those countries that are trying to take this right away from Iran are breaking the treaty,' the ambassador added.
Europe has recognised the need for negotiations with Russia to discuss the security system on the continent. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is going to Macedonia for meetings with colleagues within the OSCE