Sat, Jul 15, 2006 - Page 6 News List

UN releases details of global powers' proposal to Tehran


A package of incentives offered to Iran if it agrees to suspend uranium enrichment has been released for the first time and revealed that world powers are prepared to provide Tehran with advanced technology and possibly even nuclear research reactors.

The package -- which was put together by the US, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany -- was given to the Iranians on June 6 and some details were leaked at the time, but the full proposal showed a broader range of economic, political and energy incentives. It was released late on Thursday.

They include improving Iran's access to the global economy by promoting investment, Tehran's membership in the WTO, and the possible lifting of US and European restrictions on the export of civilian aircraft and telecommunications equipment.

The proposal was sent to the 15 members of the UN Security Council a day after foreign ministers of the six countries that offered the package met in Paris to discuss Iran's failure to respond after five weeks.

They decided Iran had given no indication that it was ready "to engage seriously" on the proposal and asked the Security Council to adopt a resolution making it mandatory that Iran suspend uranium enrichment.

France's UN Ambassador Jean-Marc de La Sabliere, the current council president, said on Thursday he expected the council to begin discussions on a resolution early next week.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad shrugged off the decision to refer Iran's nuclear program to the Security Council, saying his country would never abandon its plans for the peaceful exploitation of atomic power.

The three-page incentives proposal confirmed reports that the six powers are prepared to help Iran build state-of-the-art light water nuclear power reactors and to give legally binding guarantees that nuclear fuel will be provided for these civilian reactors.

This would be done by making Iran a partner in an international facility in Russia where all Iranian uranium could be enriched, and establishing a five-year buffer stock, it said. The six powers would also authorize the transfer of goods "and the provision of advanced technology to make [Iran's] power reactors safe against earthquakes."

The proposal also confirmed that a demand by the US, France, Britain and Germany that Iran commit to a prolonged freeze on uranium enrichment was softened to require only suspension during negotiations with Tehran.

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