Russia made no nuclear proposal: Ahmadinejad
TEHRAN, Oct 19 (AFP) Oct 19, 2007
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad denied his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin has made a proposal over the Iranian atomic programme, contradicting Iran's top nuclear negotiator, media reported Friday.
Ali Larijani had said on Wednesday Putin made a special proposal to break the deadlock over the Iranian nuclear programme in talks with supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei during his landmark visit to Iran this week.
But Ahmadinejad was quoted as saying by the semi-official Fars news agency: "There was no nuclear proposal."
According to the official news agency IRNA, Ahmadinejad said Putin's only message was "the message of friendship and cooperation."
When pressed over whether there was a nuclear proposal, he said: "Putin did not talk about this."
Larijani did not give details over the nature of the proposal, saying its content would be announced at a later date.
"Putin put forward a particular suggestion during his meeting with the supreme leader," said Larijani after Putin's visit on Tuesday, the first by a Kremlin chief since World War II.
Also Khamenei was quoted by the state-run IRNA news agency as telling Putin: "We will consider what you said and your proposal."
Ahmadinejad did not explain his contradiction of the remarks by Larijani, an influential figure in the Islamic republic who heads the supreme national security council and is an ex-head of state broadcasting.
The confusion over the reports of Putin's puported proposal, which has not been confirmed by the Kremlin, comes amid continued deadlock between Iran and the West over the Iranian nuclear programme.
Tehran is flatly refusing to give into the West's key demand, namely a suspension of uranium enrichment activities which the United States and its allies fear could be used to make nuclear weapons.
Meanwhile, the United States and Europe are considering further UN sanctions against Iran and unilateral action of their own. Iran insists its nuclear programme is peaceful.All rights reserved. © 2005 Agence France-Presse. Sections of the information displayed on this page (dispatches, photographs, logos) are protected by intellectual property rights owned by Agence France-Presse. As a consequence, you may not copy, reproduce, modify, transmit, publish, display or in any way commercially exploit any of the content of this section without the prior written consent of Agence France-Presse.