19 March 2010
Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has announced that the nuclear power plant in Iran that is built by Russia would go on line this summer. At a meeting with officials in Volgodonsk, Putin said: "The launch of the first unit of Iran's nuclear power station should be implemented already this summer." However, he gave no exact date for the launch. His statement marked yet another postponement of the launch, which tentatively had been set for this spring.
Russia has been helping Iran build the plant in the southern city of Bushehr since the mid-1990s but its launch has been marred by a series of setbacks. In recent months, Russia cited technical reasons for the delay, but Iranian officials accused Moscow of dragging its feet on the project under the Western pressure.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged Russia to delay the commissioning of the reactor until Iran proves that it will not use it for military means.
Meanwhile, the former US Secretary of State, Colin Powell, said that new sanctions on Iran won’t work because Tehran was “determined to have a nuclear program.”
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