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Russia: Sanctions Against Iran Could Backfire

A top Kremlin official says imposing sanctions on Iran, because of its nuclear program could be counterproductive.

Russian presidential adviser Igor Shuvalov made the comment Tuesday in Moscow. He called on the United Nations Security Council to act with caution.

Earlier, China called for Iran's nuclear standoff with major powers to be resolved through dialogue, even after Iran defied a U.N. Security Council deadline to stop uranium enrichment.

European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana is expected to meet with top Iranian nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani this week to clarify Tehran's indication that it wants to negotiate a resolution.

President Bush has said there must be consequences for defying the Security Council and he has stressed that Iran cannot be allowed to develop a nuclear weapon.

The Council's five permanent members - the United States, Russia, France, Britain and China - along with Germany are to meet soon to discuss their next move.

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