Archive for Tuesday, May 16, 2006

European Union offers nuclear help to Iran

May 16, 2006

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— The European Union offered Monday to help Iran obtain the most advanced civilian nuclear technology if Iran halted work on uranium enrichment, a process that produces fuel for power plants and nuclear weapons.

The White House said it supported such an initiative, but the hard-line regime in Tehran showed no sign that it was ready to accept any plan requiring it to relinquish what it contends is its right to enrich uranium for peaceful purposes.

U.S. and European officials believe Iran is secretly developing nuclear weapons under the cover of its civilian program, and they insist that no enrichment take place on Iranian territory to ensure that Tehran can't make nuclear weapons.

EU foreign ministers met in Brussels to consider a plan to reward Iran with expanded political and economic cooperation in return for suspending uranium enrichment and halting construction of a heavy water reactor, a device that produces large amounts of plutonium, which also can be used in nuclear weapons.

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