Bushehr Reactor 311.
(photo credit:Associated Press)
has asked Russia to join forces in establishing a nuclear consortium to
supply fuel for the newly operational Bushehr plant, as well as other
plants due to begin functioning in the future.
reports on Thursday, Iranian Vice President and nuclear chief Ali Akbar Salehi told state news
agency IRNA that the proposal to Russia was made "for the creation of a
consortium, licensed by that country, to do part of the work in Russia
and part of it in Iran."
RELATED:Russia: Israel need not fear reactor'Israel has days to strike Bushehr'He continued: "Moscow is studying this
offer. We (Iran) should show the world our capability in uranium
production and transforming it to nuclear fuel."
On August 21, Russia began fueling Iran's first nuclear power plant in Bushehr, and
has committed to doing so for the next ten years.
Bushehr's inauguration was a major milestone for Iran as Teheran forges ahead with
its atomic program despite UN sanctions.
"Despite all pressure, sanctions and hardships imposed by Western nations, we are now witnessing the startup of the largest symbol of Iran's peaceful nuclear activities,"Salehi told reporters inside the plant.
Russia, which helped finish building the plant, pledged to safeguard the site and prevent spent nuclear fuel from being shifted to a possible weapons program. After years of delaying its completion, Moscow says it believes the Bushehr project is essential for persuading Iran to cooperate with international efforts to ensure Iran does not develop the bomb.
The United States, while no longer formally objecting to the plant, disagrees and says Iran should not be rewarded while it continues to defy UN demands to halt enrichment of uranium, a process used to produce fuel for power plants but which can also be used in weapons production.
Iran says they currently have enough fuel to operate Bushehr for one
year and that they will continue to enrich uranium, they have also stated that they do not intend to produce all the
nuclear fuel domestically in the future. AP contributed to this report.
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