September 8, 2008

Bushehr Potential Nuclear Model for Iran

The nuclear power plant in Bushehr, Iran, being built and fueled by Russia, is a "potential model" for Iran's nuclear future, a U.S. official said Monday.

U.S. State Department spokesman Sean McCormack was responding to a reporter's observation that the president of the Russian general contractor for the Bushehr project has said the site will soon reach the stage where the start of the nuclear power plant is irreversible. McCormack noted Russia's agreement with Iran has been "applauded by members of the Security Council and the international community."

He said the Russian-Iran deal could be the way for Iran to have civilian nuclear power while allaying the international community's concern about it developing a military nuclear capacity.

"Because, quite frankly, the international system has, at this point, decided they can't be trusted with it," McCormack said. "So Bushehr, in that sense, is a potential model for going forward, so that Iran can have peaceful nuclear energy and not have access to the fuel cycle."