More Dialogue Needed on Iran’s Nuke Programme, Not Sanctions: China

China has said what is needed for resolution of Iran’s nuclear programme is more dialogue, not sanctions.

It may be mentioned that Iran, on Sunday, announced construction of 10 new uranium enrichment facilities, receiving quick criticism from Europe and the US, which has been pressing China to take a stronger stand on the issue.

In a routine media briefing, a China Foreign Ministry spokesman said that sanctions ‘are not the goal’ of new UN pressure on Iran.

“We should properly resolve this issue through dialogue,” spokesman Qin Gang said. “All parties should step up diplomatic efforts.”

On Friday, UN’s nuclear agency had passed a resolution insisting on stopping of all enrichment activities being carried out by Iran, a demand put by the US, Russia, China and three other powers.

The support of China and Russia was key, as Moscow and Beijing have traditionally either prevented new UN Security Council sanctions on Iran for its nuclear activities or watered down their potency.

China’s actions on the issue are not easily predictable, for it has deep and developing commercial and investment ties with Iran.

US and European officials have warned that Iran risks sinking ever deeper into isolation with Sunday’s announcement, but Iran has said it felt forced to move forward with the enrichment plans after the International Atomic Energy Agency’s resolution.

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