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Russia angry over UN Iran report publication

(AFP) / 9 November 2011

MOSCOW — Russia on Tuesday expressed anger over the publication of the UN nuclear watchdog’s report into the Iranian nuclear programme, saying it was adding to tensions in the standoff with world powers.

“Russia is gravely disappointed and bewildered that the report is being turned into a source adding to the tensions over the problems connected to the Iranian nuclear programme,” the foreign ministry said in a statement.

It said Moscow doubted the wisdom of making the report public, saying this risked damaging the chance of a renewal of talks between world powers and Tehran to solve the nuclear crisis through diplomacy.

The ministry said the report now risked being used by those who wanted to see Iran painted in the worst possible light, in a possible reference to Israel and the United States.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report is being published just after Israel’s President Shimon Peres warned that a pre-emptive attack on Iran to thwart its nuclear drive had become more likely.

“There are those who have the logic of ‘the worse the better’ and we cannot support this destructive logic of consciously destroying the diplomatic process,” the foreign ministry said.

In a hugely unusual move, Russia and China had jointly pressured the IAEA not to even publish the report, diplomats in Vienna said.

The ministry expressed fury that parts of the report — which said there was “credible” information Tehran may have worked on developing nuclear weapons — had been leaked in advance of its publication.

“We would like to ask to what extent the secretariat of the agency is capable of ensuring confidentiality in work, without which its effectiveness comes in question,” it said.

 
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