October 28, 2009

Kouchner acting 'against interest of French people'

Press TV - October 28, 2009 19:19:03 GMT

French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner

Iran reacts to cynical comments by French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner regarding the Tehran government's response to an IAEA-brokered deal for overseas treatment of the country's low-enriched uranium.

In a series of interviews with a number of media outlets, Kouchner had accused Iran of "wasting time" and showing "negative indications" about its nuclear intentions.

His comments came after the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) drafted a deal, according to which Iran will ship out 80 percent of its low-enriched uranium in exchange for highly-enriched uranium converted into metal fuel rods for a Tehran research reactor that produces isotopes for cancer care.

"I cannot say that the situation regarding Iran is very positive. Now, meetings are being held in Vienna. But via the indications we are receiving, matters are not very positive," Kouchner had said during an official visit to Lebanon on Friday.

An informed source in the Iranian Foreign Ministry said on condition of anonymity that such remarks are "counter-productive" at a time, when Tehran and the West are working to find common ground on the nuclear issue.

"These baseless and unreasonable accusations against Tehran are clearly in line with the [Israeli government's] frame of mind. We believe these statements to be against the interests of the French people," he said on Wednesday.

Iranian officials had welcomed foreign cooperation on the Tehran research reactor from the very beginning, but their efforts were constantly undermined by the French government, he added.

"The idea of cooperation on the Tehran research reactor was first floated by the Iranian government," he said.

"The debate now is on a few technical issues, which relate to the Iranian nation's basic rights and have remained ambiguous so far," he added.

The Foreign Ministry source noted that Kouchner's cynical remarks show that Paris has absolutely no intention of cooperating with Tehran on its enrichment program.

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