MOSCOW, February 27 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's foreign minister said Monday that the nuclear negotiations in Tehran had helped to clarify how a joint venture to enrich uranium for Iran in Russia could be formed, and added the talks would continue this week.
Sergei Lavrov told a presidential session with the government, "We now have a better understanding of how the idea can be implemented in practice."
Lavrov said the idea to enrich uranium in Russia for nuclear power plants in the Islamic Republic, which unilaterally lifted a two-year moratorium on nuclear research earlier this year, was part of a common effort to resolve the problem of Iran's controversial nuclear program.
The program has provoked international concerns that the country might be planning to develop nuclear weapons.
Lavrov said all the 35 member-nations of the Board of Governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the UN's nuclear watchdog, would have to agree with a possible package agreement between Russia and Iran on the uranium enrichment joint venture.
Lavrov said Moscow was working on the idea together with the IAEA director general, the European trio of Britain, France and Germany, and partners in the United States and China.
"We hope that the talks with the Iranians will continue this week, most likely in Moscow," he said.
The minister also said that Russia's top nuclear official, Sergei Kiriyenko, had been in Tehran Sunday for nuclear negotiations with Iran.
"The centerpiece of the discussion was our initiative to open a joint venture in Russia to enrich uranium for Iran's peaceful nuclear energy [projects]," Lavrov said.
The sides agreed to continue negotiations.
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