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US Criticizes Russia on Iran Nuclear Plant, Holds START Talks

HeadlineMar 19, 2010

The Obama administration is criticizing Russia for announcing plans to finish construction of a long-delayed civilian nuclear power plant in Iran. Speaking during a visit to Russia, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the US opposes Russia’s assistance with the Bushehr plant.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton: “We have consistently said that Iran is entitled to civil nuclear power. It is a nuclear weapons program that it is not entitled to. And if it reassures the world, or if its behavior is changed because of international sanctions, then they can pursue peaceful, civil nuclear power. In the absence of those reassurances, we think it would be premature to go forward with any project at this time, because we want to send an unequivocal message to the Iranians.”

During her stay in Russia, Clinton also took part in talks on reducing the number of US and Russian nuclear warheads under a new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, or START. Both sides say they are “at the finish line” in reaching a major agreement.

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