Russia wants sanctions against Iran dropped
Russia has announced that it will propose the elimination of unilateral sanctions against Iran if the International Atomic Energy Agency is allowed to control Iranian nuclear activities.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said on Tuesday that the lifting of sanctions against Iran “can be used in talks … if we reach this agreement, the international community may cancel the sanctions, including unilateral ones.”
He added that Russia will make its proposal to the G5+1 mediators.
Russia, the U.S., China, Britain, France and Germany have been negotiating with Iran since 2003 to alleviate concerns about its nuclear program.
The United States and the European Union have imposed sanctions on Iran’s Central Bank, and the EU has also imposed an embargo on Iranian oil that takes full effect in July 2012.
These sanctions appear to have been the harshest international effort against Iran, destabilizing its currency and creating havoc in its national economy.
Meanwhile, Israel has announced that it is prepared to take military action against Iran to halt its nuclear program.
Iran insists that its nuclear program is peaceful, but world powers are not fully convinced of it.
U.S. President Barack Obama recently announced that all options are on the table regarding Iran but he has also stated that diplomatic means could resolve the issue.
Most recently, Catherine Ashton, the G5+1 spokeswoman and EU foreign policy chief, welcomed Iran’s willingness to continue nuclear talks with world powers, but details of where and when these talks will take place have not yet been announced.