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23 Aug, 2010 12:45

Noise over nuclear power plant unjustified – commentator

If the international community is sincere in saying that Iran is entitled to a right to develop peaceful atomic energy, then its nuclear power plant at Bushehr should operate, says political commentator Sergey Strokan.

Bushehr station is operating in full compliance with the recommendations of the international atomic energy experts,” said Strokan. “It doesn’t contradict the so-called nuclear non-proliferation regime.”

However, after the Russian-built nuclear power plant was loaded with fuel in Iran's city of Bushehr on Saturday, the start-up received mixed reaction from across the globe, with Israel calling the idea of the station “unacceptable.”

Strokan insists the “noise” over the plant is exaggerated, saying the station’s launch does not fall under the recent UN sanctions against Iran.

Ali Ansari, a professor of Iranian history at St. Andrews University in London, says the development of the power plant should in fact be welcomed.

It actually shows that a system can work, that Russia is supplying the enriched uranium and we’ll be taking it away,” Ansari said. “In some ways, it undermines Iran’s position that it needs to enrich uranium on its own accord.”

Michael Thomas from the Middle East Association in London believes that supplying Iran with the uranium needed for its research reactor could in fact ensure that the country curbs its ambitions to enrich uranium on its own.

[Iranians] are very clever people. I do believe they want to strike the best possible deal that they can get out of the West,” said Thomas. “They may take this almost to the brink, but eventually a solution will be found.”