Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Russia Urges Security Guarantees for Iran

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov today called on six major powers to offer Iran "firm security guarantees" in a bid to settle the nuclear issue.

"The Sextet could make the next step and clearly place concrete proposals and security guarantees for Iran on the negotiating table," lavrov said [Interfax, 14 May].

Receiving security guarantees from major powers, and especially from the US, has always been a key Iranian demand to halt the country’s uranium enrichment program. Iran wanted the assurance that the US and its allies would not attack the country and accept the Islamic Republic; a policy of regime tolerance instead of regime change.

Earlier this month, Iran presented its own set of proposals to Russians. Today's comments by Lavrov make public Iran’s pre-condition for settling the nuclear standoff with the West.

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