France has welcomed Russia's decision on new sanctions against Iran, French President Nicolas Sarkozy said at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on Saturday.
"I would like to welcome, in particular, the decision by President Medvedev in regard to voting for sanctions on the Iran issue. This (sanctions) would be impossible if he had not made this choice," Sarkozy said.
Sarkozy noted that Russia and France have very similar positions on many international issues.
The UN Security Council on June 9 voted on a resolution to bring new sanctions against Iran because of its refusal to cease its uranium enrichment program. This is the fourth resolution against the Islamic Republic that the UN Security Council has made toward Tehran.
The new resolution seeks sanctions against Iranian banks operating abroad if there is suspicion that they are operating in the development of Iran's nuclear or rocket programs. A UN embargo has also been expanded to forbid arms deliveries to Iran.
The construction of the Bushehr nuclear power plant in Iran will not be affected by the new UN sanctions against the Islamic Republic, a Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on Friday.
The construction of Iran's first nuclear power plant began in 1975 by German companies.
However, the firms stopped work after a U.S. embargo was imposed on high-technology supplies to Iran following the 1979 Islamic Revolution and the subsequent U.S. Embassy siege in Tehran.
Russia signed a contract with Iran in February 1998 to complete the plant.
The planned sale of Russian S-300 air defense systems fell under the sanctions, which means Russia will not sell the weaponry to Iran.
The S-300 contract is worth some $800 million, while Russian officials estimate the forfeit penalty for the S-300 contract at $400 million.
ST. PETERSBURG, June 19 (RIA Novosti)
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