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Russia opposes new sanctions against Iran

(Xinhua)

10:02, January 18, 2012

MOSCOW, Jan. 17 (Xinhua) -- Russia believes new sanctions against Tehran would not be conducive to the resumption of talks concerning Iran's nuclear program, the Foreign Ministry said Tuesday.

Deputy Foreign Minister Gennadi Gatilov said that more sanctions against Iran wouldn't produce the desired results -- the resumption of nuclear talks with the group of six.

"What the West offers now is comprehensive economic sanctions, including an oil embargo. Russia doe not agree with that," Gatilov told reporters. "We believe the sanctions have exhausted themselves and one must think about how to start a process of political negotiations."

Moscow stressed that any military strike against Iran would be unacceptable as it would only make the situation more extreme.

Russia also has seen no evidence that the Iranian nuclear program has military purposes, Gatilov said.

Still, he said, Tehran's recent decision to start uranium enrichment of up to 20 percent in its Fordu facility violates UN and International Atomic Energy Agency resolutions.

"This does not add any positive sense in any case," Gatilov said.

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