Iran, Russia Agree on Completion of N. Power Plant

A00150944.jpgIran’s top nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani said Tehran and Moscow have come to a good understanding on the completion of Iran’s first nuclear power plant in the southern city of Bushehr. “We have succeeded in achieving good agreements about the launch of operation of this power plant and the relevant time-table,” Larijani told FNA in the central city of Qom on Thursday.

He also said that Russians have undertaken to “launch Bushehr atomic power plant and supply its needed fuel on time”.

Tehran says the much-delayed power station is the key to its plans for a civilian nuclear program.

Moscow has repeatedly pushed back the target date for the plant’s opening in recent months, saying in July that the project was in “crisis” because Iran was falling behind on payments for the 1.2-billion-dollar (870-million-euro) plant. Iran has dismissed Moscow’s claims, saying that it has already paid all dues and even made frequent advanced payments.

Under a deal that was made between Tehran and Moscow last September, Russia was scheduled to deliver nuclear fuel to Iran in March, the power station would go into operation in September and it would start producing energy in November.

But Russia postponed delivery of nuclear fuel to Iran due to alleged financial problems.

Russian officials have recently said Bushehr may not be completed until late 2008 – a year later than Iranian officials had planned.

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