Tuesday Mar 20, 201209:39 AM GMT
Russian FM warns of catastrophic consequences of Iran attack
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov
Tue Mar 20, 2012 9:38AM
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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has warned against any Israeli measure or even an attack on Iran's nuclear energy development sites, insisting that it would be a “huge mistake.”


“We believe this would be a huge mistake and we hope that this would never happen,” said Lavrov in an interview with the Afghan channel Tolonews on Monday.

He added that at a recent meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Washington, US President Barack Obama called for a political solution to the dispute about Iran's nuclear energy program.

“This is a wise approach and the use of force in this region would be catastrophic,” the Russian minister pointed out.

In response to a question about the West’s concerns about Tehran’s alleged intention to develop nuclear weapons, he noted that the information on the issue is “widely available and all those who interest themselves in this particular issue should read this information and make conclusions for themselves.”

Lavrov stated that repeated public statements by the Pentagon and the US intelligence community clearly ran counter to claims saying Iran is seeking to weaponize its nuclear technology.

He stressed that all Iran's nuclear sites are under surveillance of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), adding the agency’s inspectors have reported that they did not pinpoint military dimension in the Islamic Republic’s nuclear energy program.

The Russian minister said at this time, the IAEA says it still has some questions which the Iranians must answer to ensure that the country’s nuclear energy program is entirely pursuing peaceful objectives.

“As soon as it's done, Iran would be out of sanctions because it would have implemented all demands of the international community,” Lavrov further said.

The US, Israel and some of their allies accuse Tehran of pursuing military objectives in its nuclear energy program. Washington and Tel Aviv have at times threatened to attack Iran’s nuclear installations to stop the country’s atomic activities.

Iran has refuted the allegations, arguing that as a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and a member of the IAEA, Tehran is entitled to the peaceful use of nuclear technology.

SF/MA

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