Russia’s Atomic Energy Ministry announced January 26 that Russian workers will begin construction in February of a controversial 1,000-megawatt light water nuclear reactor in Bushehr, Iran. The $800 million dollar project was to have started late last year, but reports surfaced that Tehran had failed to meet its initial financial obligations. A spokesman for the Russian ministry denied any hold-up in payments, however, and attributed the delay instead to technical difficulties. According to the spokesman, Iran has paid $60 million for preparatory studies and $50 million for initial construction work. The January 1995 contract between Russia and Iran has been vigorously opposed by the United States, which fears that transfer of nuclear technology and know-how to Iran might aid what Washington believes is a clandestine Iranian effort to develop nuclear weapons. (6)
Yeltsin Memo Ordered Retaliation Against Regional Leaders, Newspapers.