Iran can now review nuke programme after UN sanctions: Russia

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Moscow, Mar 4 (UNI) Russia has said new UN Security Council sanctions imposed on Iran would give Tehran a chance to review its controversial nuclear programme.

The UN Security Council approved a resolution yesterday, imposing a third round of economic sanctions on Iran over its nuclear programme.

''The statement by the 'Iran Six' is as important as the UN resolution, which should be considered together,'' Russian Ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin told RIA Novosti news agency.

''The statement consists of new conditions and we hope Iran will review its position on its nuclear programme in accordance with these new elements. The 'Iran Six' should also bear in mind the positive steps Iran has taken,'' he said.

The foreign ministers of the 'Iran Six' countries including Germany, France, the US, Britain, China and Russia, which are leading international efforts to persuade Iran to freeze uranium enrichment, issued a joint statement calling for the dispute to be resolved through negotiations and passed a new resolution.

Mr Churkin said EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana has been authorized to continue negotiation with Iran on its uranium enrichment.

He added that resuming talks could lead to Tehran halting the construction of a heavy-water reactor, as well as its enrichment programme.

He also said recent nuclear fuel deliveries by Russia to Iran's Bushehr nuclear power plant play a positive role by giving Iran the opportunity to halt enrichment without affecting its peaceful nuclear programme.

The Ambassador pointed out it was important that ''the progress already achieved in talks between Iran and the IAEA has been taken into consideration,'' stressing new resolution 1803 clearly rules out military operations against Iran.

Under the new sanctions, the accounts of certain Iranian companies and banks will be frozen, and goods leaving and entering the country will be subjected to inspections.

In addition, travel bans have been imposed on five Iranian officials involved in nuclear projects.

Earlier, two sets of UN sanctions were imposed on Iran in December 2006 and March 2007.

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