Factbox: Reaction to Iran nuclear fuel swap deal

(BestGrowthStock) – Iran agreed with mediators Brazil and Turkey on Monday it would send some of its uranium abroad, abruptly ending its refusal to countenance such a deal just as the U.N. Security Council readied tougher sanctions.

The following is reaction to the announcement:

TURKISH PRIME MINISTER TAYYIP ERDOGAN:

“My expectation is that after this declaration there will not be a need for sanctions.”

BRAZILIAN FOREIGN MINISTER CELSO AMORIM:

“The swap agreement is in a way a confidence-building measure that allows Iran and the international community to have a cooperation that will eliminate doubts … There is no ground to keep trying for new sanctions.”

JUNIOR BRITISH FOREIGN MINISTER ALISTAIR BURT:

“Iran has an obligation to assure the international community of its peaceful intentions … The IAEA has said it is unable to verify this. That is why we have been working with our … partners on a sanctions resolution in the Security Council. Until Iran takes concrete actions to meet those obligations, that work must continue.”

FRENCH FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN BERNARD VALERO:

” … let us not deceive ourselves, a solution to the (fuel) question, if it happens, would do nothing to settle the problem posed by the Iranian nuclear program.”

“At the heart of the nuclear problem is the continuation of enrichment activities in Natanz, the construction of a heavy water reactor at Arak, the dissimulation of the Qom site and the question of IAEA inspectors which have yet to be addressed.”

EUROPEAN COMMISSION SPOKESMAN:

“We must await the full details of the agreement … This agreement, while being a positive step in the right direction does not fully address the issue of Iran’s nuclear program.”

“Many of the questions raised by the EU3+3 (the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China) and members of the Security Council still need to be answered.”

RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY SOURCE TO INTERFAX:

“We have not yet received any official information on any such agreements, therefore we cannot react to or comment on reports regarding this.”

ISRAELI TRADE AND INDUSTRY MINISTER BINYAMIN BEN-ELIEZER:

“At this stage we are studying and trying to assess what is happening there, with very great care … I hope that this time it (Iran) is not toying with the world as it has done up until this very day.”

ANALYST GALA RIANI AT IHS GLOBAL INSIGHT:

“Much remains uncertain, not least because Iran’s motives are under scrutiny, with many foreign powers worrying that it is once again playing for time. The agreement is a gamble for all parties involved.”

“The deal has made the imminence of a fourth round of U.N. sanctions on Iran less likely, making it significantly more difficult for the United States and its partners to push hard for sanctions. For Iran, the agreement provides a much-needed breather after months of mounting pressure.”

ANALYST NICOLE STRACKE AT GULF RESEARCH Center IN DUBAI:

“A successful nuclear swap might be a short term solution to delay further sanctions, but it does not change the fact that there are three Security Council resolutions which call for zero enrichment by Iran.”

“Iran hopes to shift the focus from the issue of halting nuclear enrichment to the issue of nuclear fuel exchange. The Iranian strategy is to shift the discussion from the central question of a complete halt to its enrichment activities to the issue of a nuclear fuel deal.”

RESEARCHER YIN GANG AT CHINESE ACADEMY OF SOCIAL SCIENCES:

“This will affect discussions among the Security Council members — not just China — and that appears to be Iran’s intention. But I think there will be many question marks about this plan. The plan proposes a nuclear fuel exchange. But with who? That’s all unclear, and so I don’t expect this will be a breakthrough that fundamentally resolves anything.”

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(Editing by Jon Boyle)

Factbox: Reaction to Iran nuclear fuel swap deal