Russia has strongly denied a US media report about assisting Teheran’s nuclear weapons programme, saying Moscow is firmly guided by its obligations under the nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT).
Last week, Executive Director of the Washington-based Non-proliferation Policy Education Centre Henry Sokolski wrote an article for the Washington Times alleging Russia’s involvement in an Iranian nuclear weapons programme.
Dismissing the allegations as “groundless”, the Russian Foreign Ministry in its statement issued last evening said: “The emergence of nuclear weapons in Iran would be just as unacceptable to us as to the United States. We have said this several times. So claims that Russia is helping Iran to build nuclear weapons are entirely unfounded.”
The statement underscored Moscow’s commitment to the NPT and civilian nuclear co-operation with Tehran.
“Being a signatory of the NPT, Russia is fully sticking to its non-proliferation commitments. We build our nuclear cooperation with Iran keeping in view all the restrictions prescribed by the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council,” it added.
Refuting the report of Russian help in other Iranian nuclear installations including the heavy water Arak reactor, the statement said Moscow was only involved in building the Bushehr Atomic Power Plant.
In his article, Mr. Sokolski had quoted “leaked IAEA documents” saying Iran is working on a “small and light” nuclear warhead for its latest missile systems to target south-eastern member nations of the NATO.
Based on a US intelligence report, Mr. Sokolski had alleged Russians of helping Iran complete the Arak reactor that is optimised to produce weapon-grade plutonium, and thereby enable Tehran to build a nuclear capable missile.