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IAEA inspectors to feel pressure on Iran issue - parliamentarian

MOSCOW, February 1 (RIA Novosti) - UN nuclear inspectors are likely to come under political pressure to beef up reports on the Iranian nuclear issue to support the case for sanctions against Tehran, a senior Russian parliamentarian said Wednesday.

"I believe that IAEA inspectors see no grounds for referring the Iranian file to the UN Security Council [for possible sanctions]," Konstantin Kosachev said. "But serious political pressure may be put on [them] to make their conclusions tougher" to create a basis for "a further decision on sanctions," he said.

Kosachev said the Iranian nuclear file had been referred to the UN Security Council "for information," which, according to him, was "an act of political pressure on Iran."

The Security Council will not consider the file before March 6 when the IAEA is expected to submit its report on the problem. "No one knows what this report will contain," the parliamentarian said.

Several countries have accused Iran of pursuing a secret nuclear weapons program but the Islamic Republic insists that it only wants nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.

Iran says the referral of the nuclear file to the UN Security Council, which has the power to impose sanctions if it is found to be in breach of its international commitments, would mark the end of diplomacy on the issue.

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