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    Sanctions against Iran should not be basis for use of force - Lavrov

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    Possible harsher sanctions against Iran should not pave the way for future military actions against the Islamic Republic.

    Possible harsher sanctions against Iran should not pave the way for future military actions against the Islamic Republic, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.

    Earlier in the month, the Iran Six discussed a possible new UN Security Council resolution that imposes further sanctions against Tehran over its controversial nuclear program. The six countries, including the United States, France, Britain, Germany, China and Russia, comprise a group of international mediators negotiating with Iran on its nuclear program.

    "Any Security Council decision [on Iran] should clearly state that they can not be used as a basis for the use of force [against Iran]," Russia's top diplomat said in an interview with the TV-Center channel.

    Russian President Dmitry Medvedev reiterated on Saturday that fresh sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program are possible, but "not optimal." He said they should be well-considered and not aimed at Iran's civilian population.

    "Efforts to bring the sides back to negotiating table are still ongoing, and there are still chances that they would bring some results. But when and if we have to address this issue at the Security Council again, we will be ready to discuss only "clever" sanctions, as our president put it," Lavrov said.

    He urged Iran to be more cooperative with the UN nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

    "The problem is that Iran is not being totally cooperative with the IAEA," he said. "As far as the cooperation with IAEA inspectors is concerned - yes, we want more from Iran. IAEA specialists still have serious unanswered questions, and we want that answers too to be sure of the peaceful nature of Iran's nuclear program," he said.

    TOMSK, March 28 (RIA Novosti)

     

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