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. Bush cites Putin 'leadership' on Iran nuclear program
SOCHI, Russia, April 6 (AFP) Apr 06, 2008
US President Georgia W. Bush thanked Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday for Moscow's efforts to help ease international worries about Iran's nuclear program.

"I appreciate his leadership on the Iranian issue," Bush said at a joint news conference following talks with Putin at this southern Russian resort city that both said had included discussion about Iran.

In a joint declaration issued after the meeting, the two countries called on Tehran to comply fully with UN rules and resolutions that required a "full and verifiable suspension of enrichment-related and reprocessing activities."

"Russia's agreement to deliver nuclear fuel and take back spent fuel from Iran's nuclear reactor at Bushehr is a welcome step that provides Iran a civil nuclear power capability" without the need to enrich uranium itself, the statement said.

The United States has said it suspects Iran of using its civilian nuclear program as cover for development of nuclear weapons, a charge Tehran denies.

Russia, which is building Iran's first nuclear power plant at Bushehr, says it has seen no evidence that Iran is seeking to build nuclear weapons, but has backed UN sanctions resolutions aimed at curbing Tehran's nuclear work.

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