Iran Nuclear NewsRussia says no to any Iran deal sidelining it

Russia says no to any Iran deal sidelining it

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AFP: Russia said Friday that it would not accept any decision on Iran reached by western powers without Moscow being previously consulted. MOSCOW, March 24, 2006 (AFP) – Russia said Friday that it would not accept any decision on Iran reached by western powers without Moscow being previously consulted.

“I doubt we would accept (a proposal) taken behind our back and then presented to us as the only outcome possible,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters in Moscow.

He was commenting on reports earlier this week that Britain had been carrying out secret negotiations with other western capitals.

On Wednesday The Times of London quoted a confidential letter from John Sawers, political director at the British Foreign Office, calling for a United Nations resolution allowing sanctions and even the use of force if Iran refused to give up its contested nuclear activities.

The letter was said to have been dated March 16 and sent to his counterparts in Bonn, Paris and Washington.

“These last months we have sought to get from our western partners a common strategy” to resolve the Iranian problem, Lavrov said.

“We are seeking information from our western colleagues to find out whether (the Times story) is true or not,” he said.

“If it is true then we shall have very serious talks on this situation, including at foreign minister level.”

Russia, a permanent member of the UN Security Council, has the power to veto any resolution on Iran.

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