Iran Backed Out of U.N. Fuel Swap Following Internal Pressure, WikiLeaks Cables Say
January 5, 2011
Iran (ChattahBox World News)—Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad considered participating in a U.N.-led nuclear fuel-swap plan in 2009, but buckled under pressure from within Iran, according to WikiLeaks cables released today. Under the plan, Iran would have exchanged its low-enriched uranium for ready-to-use nuclear fuel, but some in Iran interpreted the deal as a “virtual defeat” due to Western pressures, and it fell through, the Huffington Post reports.
The news comes from cables between the U.S. and a foreign minister from Turkey, which has formed a friendship with Iran, Huffington Post notes. The cables also indicate that Iranians trust the U.S. over Britain, and note that Iranians would “prefer to get fuel from the U.S. rather than the Russians.”
The cables note that one American diplomat said although Turkey could be helpful in mediating with Iran, the country should take a strong stance on Iran’s nuclear program, the Huffington Post reports. A Turkish foreign minister rebutted by saying, “Only Turkey can speak bluntly and critically to the Iranians.”