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Iran Reports 7th Shipment of Russian Nuclear Fuel


Iran's official news agency says the country has received a seventh shipment of nuclear fuel from Russia for its first atomic power plant.

The Islamic Republic News Agency says the consignment of 11 tons of uranium fuel rods arrived at the Bushehr plant in southern Iran Saturday.

The report says the plant, which needs an initial supply of 82 tons of fuel, has so far received 77 tons and that the final shipment is expected soon.

Iran has said it wants the plant to begin operating as early as the middle of this year.

Russia and the United States have said the fuel shipments mean Iran has no need to enrich uranium on its own. But Iran insists on continuing enrichment activities, arguing they are necessary for other planned nuclear reactors. Highly enriched uranium can be used in building a nuclear weapon.

The five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany have distributed a set of proposed new sanctions against Iran for refusing to halt enriching uranium.

The draft resolution, which includes a new travel ban on individuals involved in Iran's nuclear and missile programs, was given to all Security Council members on Friday.

The six world powers agreed on the new sanctions earlier this week at a meeting in Berlin.

The Security Council has already imposed two sets of sanctions on Iran for its failure to suspend uranium enrichment.

Iran has said new sanctions will not stop it from pursuing a nuclear program.

The United States and its Western allies accuse Tehran of developing technology to produce nuclear weapons. Iran denies the charge.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.

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