Iran and Russia defy US by signing nuclear fuel deal

#1
Iran and Russia yesterday signed a nuclear fuel deal despite strong American opposition, clearing the way for the Islamic regime's first nuclear reactor to start operating next year.

The agreement was signed at the Bushehr atomic plant in southern Iran. Alexander Rumyantsev, head of Russia's Federal Atomic Energy Agency, said the first batch of enriched uranium fuel was in Siberia ready to be shipped.

"This is a very important incident in the ties between the two countries and in the near future a number of Russian experts will be sent to Bushehr to equip the power station," he said.

Iran will have to repatriate all spent nuclear fuel to Russia. Moscow hopes this will allay American worries that Iran may use the spent fuel, which could be reprocessed into bomb-grade plutonium, to develop arms.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which has been probing Iran's nuclear programme for more than two years, said it would keep a careful eye on Teheran's use of the fuel.

Some senior western officials have predicted the deal could start the countdown to an attack by America or Israel to destroy Iran's nuclear facilities before nuclear fuel is delivered, in order to avoid radioactive fallout.

In 1981, Israel bombed Saddam Hussein's reactor before it was fuelled, in a raid that is now held up as a model for America's doctrine of "preventive" military action.

Iran has heavily defended the Bushehr reactor - which is being rebuilt by Russia - and has dispersed other facilities.

America says Iran has no need for a nuclear electricity generating industry because it is a major producer of oil, and argues that any nuclear knowledge will bring the radical regime closer to an atomic bomb.

Britain, France and Germany - the so-called "EU-3" countries that have led the way in trying to negotiate a solution - accept that Iran is entitled to develop a civil nuclear programme.

But they say it must be closely monitored and Iran must give up key technologies - uranium enrichment and reprocessing of plutonium - that could provide a short cut to a nuclear weapon.

Under the terms of an agreement with the EU-3, Iran has agreed temporarily to "suspend" all work on these technologies, but the deal is highly unstable.

Sustained American pressure on Moscow - and the discovery that Iran had lied to UN inspectors about its nuclear programme for nearly two decades - delayed the deal between Iran and Russia for more than a year.

America fears that Iran could one day mimic North Korea in "breaking out" of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, commandeer the nuclear fuel and reprocess it quickly to make several bombs.

Iran yesterday rejected European demands for a "cessation" of enrichment and reprocessing activities, saying the issue was "non-negotiable".

Iran has repeatedly threatened to end its suspension unless the Europeans quickly make good on promises to help rehabilitate Iran and provide advanced technology, including nuclear expertise.

Iran says it wants to build uranium centrifuges to make low-enriched fuel for its future civil reactors.

According to the Washington Post, the disgraced Pakistani scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan offered Iran the makings of a nuclear bomb programme as early as 1987.

The newspaper said Iranian officials had told the IAEA they bought centrifuge designs and a "starter kit" for uranium enrichment, but turned down more sensitive equipment.

"The offer is the strongest indication to date that Iran had a nuclear weapons program, but it doesn't prove it," a diplomat told the paper.
Is it me or do i remember correctly that putin stood next to the hairless chimp last week and agreed that iran and north korea should NOT have the bomb??

A_S
 
#2
Agent_Smith said:
Is it me or do i remember correctly that putin stood next to the hairless chimp last week and agreed that iran and north korea should NOT have the bomb??

A_S
i suppose he thinks the "repatriate all spent nuclear fuel to Russia" part maintains that position.

Reminds me of Trudeau selling "Cando" nuclear reactors to india. They'd never use it to build a bomb........... :lol:
 
#3
All very well asking them to return the waste material, but do you remember what happened to large parts of the USSR's atomic material stockpile at the end of the cold war?

"Ummm, Mr IAEE inspector, we dont know where that batch of plutonium has gone. I think we stored it out the back for safe keeping sometime in the 70's! You might want to ask those friendly chechnians that lurk round the test facility."

Doesn't inspire great confidence in the russian record keeping dept!

A_S
 
#4
I bet that the contractors applying the final paint finishes ahead of the reactor opening are now cra**ing themselves - probably have stiff necks from looking up into the sky for the first whisper of a jet engine.....
 
#5
I still wait to be completely convinced that the Iranians are doing anything other than what they say they are doing. The kit that everybody is concerned about is "dual-use", in that it is needed to refine fuel for civilain use. Given that the present US and UK governments have led us up the garden path once about WMDs can they be trusted this time?

Just because the US is relatively happy to be the world's biggest polluter and the UK government is too far up it's own arrse to have a sensible power generation policy doesn't necessarily mean that everybody else is as foolish and short sighted
 
#7
tomahawk6 said:
The US is not the world's biggest polluter - India and China are.
I think you are right, but by head of capita, the US is the heaviest polluter. they have about 300million whereas india and china have about 2 billion for not much higer (individual country) pollution rates.

A_S
 
#9
Don't worry - Sellafield 'lost' 30kg of plutonium because of a 'paperwork cock-up'!
 
#10
Worst thing is they dont actually know if they lost it or if it never actually existed! 8O 8O 8O

Therefore, bin laden et al could be creaming their pants over the thought of a few dirty bombs, or some bean counter with fat fingers put in the wrong number on the consignement note! :D
 
#11
MikeMcc said:
I still wait to be completely convinced that the Iranians are doing anything other than what they say they are doing. The kit that everybody is concerned about is "dual-use", in that it is needed to refine fuel for civilain use.
Something like that was also said when Canada sold, or gave, India Cando reactors
 

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