Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Russia slams extra restrictions on Iran

Source: Press TV

Russia complains to the UN Security Council about the violation of UN terms after Germany prevented the delivery of items for a nuclear power plant in Iran.

Russia had previously voiced its objection to Germany's seizure of technology for Iran's Bushehr power plant and the questioning of several men connected with the deal, UN diplomats told Reuters on Monday.

In a meeting of a UNSC committee on Iran sanctions, Russia's UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin said that Moscow was furious about the moves by "third states" to prevent the delivery of certain items to Iran. He did not clearly mention Germany.

Churkin criticized such restrictions, which go beyond four rounds of UN sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program, as "unacceptable" and "not in line" with council resolutions.

"Strict compliance with Security Council resolutions ... requires the need for member states to refrain from the use of additional limitation constraints ... especially ones of an extra-territorial nature," he said.

Germany had inspected shipments of equipment bound for the Bushehr nuclear power plant in Iran. German customs agents seized the cargo on the grounds that EU law prohibits any Iran-bound nuclear-related equipment from being shipped across its territory.

Diplomats say the European Union's own directives on implementing UN measures against Iran go further than the UN sanctions and do not exempt the Bushehr plant.

"It may be allowed under Security Council resolutions, but it's not allowed under EU rules," a European diplomat told Reuters. "Perhaps Russia wasn't aware of it."

Germany's UN mission had no immediate comment.

Western corporations launched the construction of the Bushehr power plant in the 1970s but abandoned their commitments and pulled out of the project following the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran.

Iran signed a deal with Russia in 1992 to finalize the construction of the nuclear power plant. Moscow has since postponed the launch of the Bushehr plant, which was initially planned to be completed in 1999.

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