PARIS, Jan. 4 (Xinhua) -- France Monday rejected Iran's Sunday "ultimatum" that urged Western powers to decide whether to sell nuclear fuel to Iran or swap nuclear fuel for Iran's low-enriched uranium within a month.
French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner, in an interview with the RTL radio, said it was not acceptable that Iran brought forward a new plan to counter the proposals by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
The IAEA prepared a draft deal agreed by Western powers, which suggested Iran transport most of its low-enriched uranium to Russia and France by the end of 2009 for further processing. The higher-enriched uranium then would be shipped back to Iran for civilian use.
The draft deal fell on deaf ears when it passed the Dec. 31, 2009 deadline.
Speaking of the recent anti-government protests in Iran, Kouchner said the Iranian regime was facing threat from some people that were very "determined." He also condemned Iranian authorities' alleged killings and arrests in the protests.
Western powers, including the United States, France, Britain and Germany, have been accusing Iran of secretly developing nuclear weapons under the disguise of civilian nuclear use, which was flatly denied by Iran.
Iran issues ultimatum to West over nuclear fuel swap
TEHRAN, Jan. 3 (Xinhua) -- Iran's Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said the West should decide whether it wants to sell nuclear fuel to Iran or swap nuclear fuel for Iran's low-enriched uranium, the semi-official Fars news agency reported on Sunday.
"The international community has only one more month to make a decision. Otherwise, Tehran will enrich uranium to a higher purity needed for the fuel," he said, adding that "This is an ultimatum." Full story
IAEA receives report on Iranian plans of importing purified uranium
VIENNA, Dec. 30 (Xinhua) -- The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) confirmed Wednesday it has received an intelligence report that said Iran was planning to clandestinely import purified uranium ore from Kazakhstan.
The authenticity of the report was yet to be confirmed, an IAEA official told Xinhua on condition of anonymity. Full story
FM: Iran to produce nuclear fuel if West fails to supply
TEHRAN, Dec. 29 (Xinhua) -- Iran's Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said Tuesday that the country would produce high-level nuclear fuel for its research reactor if Western countries refuse to provide the supply, the satellite Press TV reported.
"We set the time (for the West) to make a decision about supplying the fuel needed for the Tehran research reactor," Mottaki said in a press conference. Full story
Russia denies knowledge of Iranian uranium deal with Kazakhstan
MOSCOW, Dec. 31 (Xinhua) -- Russia has no knowledge of an alleged Iranian plan to import purified uranium ore from Kazakhstan, the foreign ministry said Thursday.
Moscow is verifying information that a state signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) submitted a report on a uranium deal between Iran and Kazakhstan to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the UN nuclear watchdog, foreign minister spokesman Andrei Nesterenko said. Full story