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Russia, China back U.S. on Iran resolution

  |   Nov. 27, 2009 at 11:21 PM
TEHRAN, Nov. 27 (UPI) -- Support from Russia and China gives more force to a U.N. nuclear watchdog resolution denouncing Iran's nuclear program, officials said.

The International Atomic Energy Agency voted 25-3 with six abstentions for a resolution calling for an immediate freeze on nuclear enrichment in Iran. Russia and China, which have been unwilling in the past to take a hard line on Iran, both supported the resolution, which also said there is "serious concern" about possible military goals for Iran's nuclear program.

White House officials said President Obama's willingness to reach out to the two countries has gotten results, The Washington Post reported.

"Today's overwhelming vote at the IAEA's Board of Governors demonstrates the resolve and unity of the international community with regard to Iran's nuclear program," the White House spokesman, Robert Gibbs, said. "Indeed, the fact that 25 countries from all parts of the world cast their votes in favor shows the urgent need for Iran to address the growing international deficit of confidence in its intentions."

In September, it was revealed Iran had a second uranium enrichment facility, heightening Western fears about Tehran developing the capacity to build a nuclear weapon.

Gibbs said if Iran truly intends to use its nuclear program for peaceful purposes, the United States is prepared to work toward a diplomatic solution on the matter.

© 2009 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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