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US Hopes Russia Can Help Bring Iran Out of Nuclear Isolation


US ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) says countries like Russia have a growing concern about Iran's nuclear program. The envoy, Gregory Schulte, told the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna Thursday Russia's involvement in talks to curb Iran's nuclear ambitions is important.

The United States has long pushed for the Iran nuclear file to go to the UN Security Council for possible sanctions, but has never won enough support on the IAEA board of governors.

But Ambassador Gregory Schulte thinks that more key countries are becoming concerned about the true nature of Iran's nuclear program.

"I think that countries across the globe are very concerned about Iran's activities; it's not just the United States," he said. "The European Union shares our concern about Iran's intentions and Iran's activities, Russia shares them, China shares them, India has even shown that it shares them and I think it's this unified front that we hope will help show the Iranian leadership that they're isolating themselves and help convince the Iranian leadership to take a different path. Russia's involvement is very important to this because Russia, like us, is concerned about Iranian intentions and Russia is playing an important role".

The envoy said terrorism and the threats posed by Iran's nuclear weapons program were among the greatest dangers to global security today.

"At the IAEA we worry about denying terrorists the most deadly of weapons, we also worry about denying the most deadly of weapons to the most dangerous of countries and Iran is a case in point," he added.

Mr. Schulte said Iran suppresses freedom at home and, if armed with nuclear weapons, could destabilize the whole region.

"A country that threatens death to other countries must be denied the most deadly of weapons," he explained.

The IAEA executive board meets next week in Vienna to review Iran's cooperation with inspectors and the agency. The agency could send the case to the Security Council for possible sanctions. Iran maintains its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.

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