|Putin hails Iran’s efforts to settle nuclear dispute with West||
TEHRAN – Russian President Vladimir Putin has hailed efforts by Iran to settle the dispute with the West on the country’s nuclear program.
“I am certain that this has been made possible mainly through the efforts of the Iranian leaders and their position,” Putin said during a meeting with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in Moscow on Thursday.
The United States and some of its Western allies have been claiming for some years that Iran may be using its nuclear program as a cover to develop nuclear weapons.
To cast more light on the nature of its nuclear program, Iran signed a deal with the 5+1 group (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany) in Geneva in November 2013, according to which Tehran agreed to allow more investigation of its nuclear activities and suspend its 20 percent uranium enrichment program. In return, the West agreed to ease sanctions imposed on the country. The deal is designed to work out a comprehensive deal.
Putin also said the agreements should not be left on paper and the sides should move forward.
Zarif, for his part, thanked Moscow for its efforts to clinch the nuclear accord with the world powers over its nuclear energy program.
The Iranian chief diplomat also met with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov on the same day.
Lavrov said Iran “must be and inevitably will become part of complex efforts to settle the Syrian problem.”
He also reiterated that Tehran must be allowed to join the Geneva II conference on Syria, which will open on January 22.
Zarif stated that Tehran will participate in the conference, aimed at finding a solution to the ongoing crisis in Syria, if it is invited. However, he emphasized that Tehran will not accept any precondition for its participation.
The United States has said that Iran needs to publicly accept the Geneva I communique in order to participate in the Geneva II conference.
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