Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad plan to discuss the Islamic Republic's disputed nuclear program on the sidelines of a summit in China, a presidential aide told Russia's state-run RIA Novosti.
Their discuss would come days ahead of a fresh round of international talks on the issue set for later this month, with Putin advisor Yuri Ushakov telling RIA-Novosti on Saturday that the Russian president needs to "feel the heat surrounding the Iranian problem and see how this issue is perceived in Tehran."
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A former US ambassador, Ushakov also said Russia is expected to “promote the thought that Iran’s right to develop peaceful energy under the oversight of the International Atomic Energy Agency should be approved," Businessweek quoted RIA-Novosti as saying.
Moscow is hosting talks on Iran’s problematic nuclear program from June 18-19. The meeting marks the third attempt in as many months to settle a growing standoff, said Businessweek, with Western countries accusing the Islamic Republic of using the program to make a bomb and the US and Europe recently tightening sanctions in an effort to pressure Iran on the issue.
Iran says its nuclear program is purely for civilian purposes.
Putin and Ahmadinejad are expected to discuss the issue on the sidelines of the 12th Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit set for June 6-7 in Beijing, said RIA-Novosti.