May 03, 2008

Russian equipment for Bushehr NPP in Iran - Tehran

12:56 | 03/ 05/ 2008

TEHRAN, May 3 (RIA Novosti) - The Russian equipment for the Bushehr nuclear power plant earlier held up on the Azerbaijani-Iranian border has been finally delivered to Iran, a spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry said Saturday.

"The cargo is on its way to the Bushehr NPP after Azerbaijan received all documents required from the Russian side," Mohammad Al Hosseini told Iranian satellite TV channel Alalam.

The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said Thursday Azerbaijan has allowed the Russian equipment for Bushehr, detained on the border more than a month ago, into Iran.

A column of vehicles carrying heat insulators for the Bushehr NPP, which Russian contractor Atomstroyexport is building in the southwest of the Islamic Republic, was stopped at the border between Azerbaijan and Iran in late March.

Atomstroyexport earlier said the cargo destined for Bushehr was not a dual-purpose product or nuclear material, but insulating equipment. "The shipment was registered in line with all accepted international practical regulations."

However, Azerbaijani authorities said earlier they had not received information from Russia over the cargo in a timely and appropriate manner.

Azerbaijani Deputy Foreign Minister Araz Azimov said Wednesday he met with Iranian Ambassador to Azerbaijan Naser Hamidi Zare on Tuesday and assured him that the delay was caused by technical formalities rather than political issues.

Iran is currently under three sets of UN sanctions over its uranium program. The latest resolution against Iran froze accounts of certain Iranian companies and banks, and introduced inspections for goods leaving and entering the Islamic Republic.

Russia's ambassador to Azerbaijan, Vasily Istratov, confirmed on Wednesday that the shipment would soon be delivered to Iran.

Russian N. Cargo Arrives in Iran

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iran's Foreign Ministry Spokesman Seyed Mohammad Ali Hosseini said on Friday that the consignment of heat insulation material, destined to Bushehr nuclear power plant from Russia, has entered Iranian soil after being stranded by Azerbaijan recently.

"The consignment is on the way to be transferred to Bushehr nuclear power plant after Azerbaijan received related documents it demanded from Russia," Hosseini told Iran's Arabic TV network Alalam.

Sources at the State Customs Committee of the Azerbaijan Republic said on Thursday that Azerbaijan has let through its territory the cargoes consigned from Russia for the Bushehr nuclear power plant in Iran.

A truck carrying the consignment crossed the Azerbaijan-Iran border shortly after noon Thursday, the sources said.

Diplomatic sources indicated that the authorities issued permission for the transit of the cargo Wednesday.

Azerbaijan customs officers stopped the consignment of heat-insulating materials, due to be delivered to the Bushehr plant, on the border with Iran March 29.

They said then there was no permission on the part of the Azerbaijan government for the transit of that cargo via the country's territory.

On April 30, the Russian side handed over all the required documents via the embassy in Baku, and Azerbaijan Foreign Ministry said the problem of the cargo's passage would be settled shortly.

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