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Concern over Iran's response to IAEA vote

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Concern over Iran's response to IAEA vote

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Iran remains defiant after being reported to the UN Security Council over concerns about its atomic programme.

Tehran has confirmed it is ending snap UN checks on its nuclear sites and will resume uranium enrichment. Iran continues to insist that it only wants to develop nuclear power, not weapons. Observers are warning that Tehran’s response to the vote by the UN nuclear watchdog could escalate the dispute. Iran’s foreign minister told a news conference that his country was going to stop all voluntary measures undertaken over the past two and half years. With the threat that UN sanctions might eventually be imposed, the Russian defence minister, Sergei Ivanov, had a word of caution. “I’m not sure sanctions are effective,” he said. “In fact, the case of Iraq also proves that sanctions are not always effective. It’s a tricky thing.” Iran has also warned that sanctions would send oil prices beyond a level industrialised economies could afford. Tehran, meanwhile, says it is still keeping diplomatic options open with Russia, with talks set for February 16 in Moscow.