Moscow affirms possible sanctions against Iran

The presidential administration has reaffirmed that Moscow will support further sanctions against Iran should the Islamic country fail to meet its nuclear obligations.

The position, earlier voiced by President Dmitry Medvedev during his visit to the G20 summit in Pittsburgh, has not changed, told journalists on Tuesday spokesperson for the president Natalya Timakova.

“Russia still believes that Iran should engage in more active and wide cooperation with the IAEA and other countries in terms of providing information on its nuclear program,” she said.

“The world community must be certain that Iran’s nuclear program is peaceful, but if these obligations are not fulfilled, the application of sanctions cannot be excluded,” she added.

In the meantime, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu believes that the time is ripe for tough sanctions against Iran.

“Crippling sanctions means that we have to stop the importation of refined petroleum, which means gasoline above and before anything else, and we have to stop the exportation, because the Iranian economy is dependent on both, and the budget of the Iranian government is supremely dependent on both,” Netanyahu told Interfax news agency and Kommersant newspaper on Tuesday.

He added that the sanctions proposed by him could be “highly effective in the short and middle term.”

“If we do give sanctions a chance, we have to give them very strong, sharp teeth, and we have to apply them now,” Netanyahu added.

Iran’s president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad reiterated on Tuesday that the country’s reaction to possible sanctions will be tough.

“If new sanctions are imposed we will react like never before. We won’t try to negotiate or explain anything. Our response will make those who imposed the sanctions regret their actions and they will be ashamed,” he told the news conference in Tehran.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is on an official visit to Moscow. After his talks with the Russian president on Monday, he met Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin on Tuesday.

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