Iran's nuclear tour without major powers, key allies

January 14, 2011 14:14


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VIENNA — Diplomats say a weekend tour of Iran's nuclear sites appears set to go ahead without Russia, China, the European Union or key allies Turkey and Brazil.

Their absence would blunt Teheran's attempts to gain support from major powers ahead of crucial talks next week in Istanbul on its atomic activities.

Iranian envoy Ali Asghar Soltanieh said Friday that representatives of Arab, nonaligned and developing countries had accepted invitations to visit Teheran's central Natanz enrichment facility and its still unfinished heavy water reactor at Arak.

He would not say who else was invited. But China and the EU have publicly declined. And diplomats who asked for anonymity because their information is privileged say Russia, Switzerland, Turkey and Brazil had also declined or not responded.

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