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Mon Jun 18, 2012 2:38PM
Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov (file photo)

Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov (file photo)

Russia's deputy foreign minister and chief nuclear negotiator has reiterated Moscow’s opposition to the unilateral sanctions against Iran over its nuclear energy program. Sergei Ryabkov made the comments on Monday amid the ongoing talks between Iran and the P5+1 group - the United States, Britain, China, France, Russia, plus Germany - in Moscow, IRNA reported. In an interview with the daily Izvestia the official stated that Russia is opposed to the use of sanctions as a tool to achieve political ends. He added that such an approach politically and ethically undermines the possibility of reaching any agreements. Ryabkov's remarks echoed earlier comments made by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov during a press conference with his Iranian counterpart Ali Akbar Salehi in Tehran on June 13. “Our stance regarding unilateral sanctions is clear. We are opposed to any unilateral sanctions,” Lavrov said. The United States and some of its allies have imposed unilateral sanctions against Iran, claiming that the country's nuclear energy program may include a military component. Tehran refutes the allegation, noting that frequent inspections by the International Atomic Energy Agency have never found any diversion in Iran's nuclear energy program toward military purposes. HMV/SS/AZ
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