Russia supports informing UN about IAEA work in Iran - diplomat

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VIENNA, February 2 (RIA Novosti) - Russia does not object to informing the UN Security Council about the UN nuclear watchdog's work in Iran and outlining what the latter must do to break the deadlock in the nuclear talks, a Russian diplomat said Thursday.

"We are not against informing the UN Security Council about the work conducted by the International Atomic Energy Agency in Iran and the steps the country has to take to improve the situation," Grigory Berdennikov, the Russian envoy to international organizations in Vienna, said during a meeting of IAEA's Board of Governors.

The diplomat said the IAEA Board had asked the UN not to take any serious measures against Iran while the agency was attempting to resolve the situation.

Envoys from the five permanent UN Security Council members (Britain, China, France, Russia, and the United States) and Germany held a meeting in London Monday, agreeing to refer Iran's "nuclear file" to the Security Council, which has the power to impose economic sanctions.

The U.S. and some European countries have accused Iran of pursuing a secret nuclear weapons program, although the Islamic Republic insists it wants nuclear energy only for peaceful purposes.

Berdennikov said Russia had also expressed concern about the resumption of uranium enrichment research in Iran and hoped that the decision by the IAEA Board to refer the Iranian nuclear dossier to the UN Security Council would force the country to take urgent measures to reduce the tension surrounding its nuclear program.

The Security Council will not consider the dossier before March 6, when the IAEA is expected to submit its report on the issue.

"The development of the situation will depend on the contents of the report submitted by IAEA Director General Mohamed El-Baradei before the Board of Governors meeting in March," Berdennikov said. "We hope the document will not demand any action on the part of the UN Security Council and that the issue will be resolved by the IAEA."

"This would be, undoubtedly, the best solution," he said.

Meanwhile, the Russian diplomat stressed the importance of Russia's initiative to enrich uranium on its territory for Iran.

"Many of the speakers [at a Vienna IAEA meeting] supported the proposal and praised Russia's role in the resolution of the Iranian nuclear problem," Berdennikov said.

"Russia is ready to cooperate with all the interested parties to resolve the existing problem," the diplomat said.

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