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Brazil, Turkey slam Iran sanctions talks

28 May 2010 0:55

Brazil and Turkey have urged world powers to support the Tehran declaration, instead of talking about new sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program.

Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan met in Brasilia on Thursday and urged Western powers against neglecting the Tehran declaration that was signed on May 17.

Erdogan said imposing sanctions on Iran would be a premature move. “We don’t believe that it is correct to talk about sanctions at this time,” he told reporters.

The Turkish premier added that Tehran had repeatedly reassured Ankara that it had no intentions of making nuclear weapons.

“We have communicated our position to the Iranian government and they have informed us that they do not want to develop nuclear weapons and that they only want to use nuclear energy for peaceful ends,” he said.

The Brazilian president, for his part, said the fuel-swap deal with Iran should not be taken for granted.

“Tehran’s declaration constitutes an opportunity which cannot be wasted. It does not solve all problems at once, but it reestablishes the conditions for there to be dialogue as a more efficient path to overcome differences and build trust around Iran’s exclusively peaceful nuclear program,” Lula said.

The declaration, signed by the foreign ministers of Iran, Turkey, and Brazil in the Iranian capital, commits Tehran to put 1,200 kg (2,640 lb) of its low-enriched uranium in escrow in Turkey in exchange for 120 kg (264 lb) of 20 percent-enriched nuclear fuel for the Tehran research reactor, which produces radioisotopes for cancer treatment.

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