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Cleric says Tehran declaration accurate

21 May 2010 15:36

A senior Iranian cleric has hailed the Islamic Republic’s tripartite nuclear fuel swap declaration, saying the move has “thrown the ball into the West’s court.”

The foreign ministers of Iran, Brazil and Turkey on Monday issued a nuclear fuel swap declaration on Monday under which Tehran agreed to send 1,200 kg of its low-enriched uranium to Turkey in exchange for 120 kg of higher-enriched uranium it requires for medical purposes.

Tehran’s interim Friday Prayers leader Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati described the declaration as “accurate and good” and said that it was a strong response to the West and its efforts to impose more sanctions on Iran.

“This move by Iran is another step towards building trust and leaves no room for Western excuses,” said Ayatollah Jannati, who also heads the Guardian Council added.

The senior cleric added that the Tehran declaration was not a nuclear agreement and “signing an agreement will have to come at later stages.”

Ayatollah Jannati predicted that the United States was unlikely to welcome the declaration and said, “If the other sides accept the articles of the declaration regarding Iran’s right to enrich uranium, this will mean they will have to take back their previous allegations about Iran’s peaceful nuclear program.”

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