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Iran nuclear scientist heading home via third country

07-14-2010 19:04 BJT

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Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman says Shahram Amiri, an Iranian nuclear scientist, who disappeared more than a year ago and mysteriously turned up in Washington, is on his way back to Iran via a third country.

Russian Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko said that international sanctions against Iran will not hinder plans to develop joint energy and power projects with the Islamic Republic. Shmatko also said he saw no obstacles for Russian firms to supply oil products to Iran if they decided to do so.

Before leaving Washington where he took refuge on Tuesday in Iran's Interests Section office at the Pakistani embassy, Amiri told Iranian Press TV channel he will reveal the details of his "ordeal" to local media after reaching Tehran.

Repeating an accusation that Amiri was kidnapped by U.S. agents, the Iranian spokesman said Iran would continue to pursue his case " legally and diplomatically."

Amiri disappeared while on a pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia in June 2009. Iran has repeatedly claimed that the US abducted Amiri, charges the US denies.

Hillary Clinton, US Secretary of State, said, "Mr. Amiri has been in the United States of his own free will and he is free to go."

Before he disappeared, Amiri worked at Tehran's Malek Ashtar University, an institution closely connected to the country's powerful Revolutionary Guard.

US media reported in March that Amiri defected to the US and was assisting the CIA in efforts to undermine Iran's nuclear programme.

Iran's state TV has periodically showed videos of Amiri claiming his abduction and torture by the US.

Shahram Amiri, Alleged Iranian Nuclear Scientist, said, "I was kidnapped in the holy city of Medina on 3rd of June in year 2009 through a joint operation by the terror and abduction teams of the American intelligence agency, CIA. I was subjected to the worst kinds of torture and pressure."

The United Nations in early June slapped a fourth round of sanctions on Tehran over its refusal to curtail its nuclear programme.

The US and its Western allies accuse Iran of working to develop nuclear weapons. Iran denies the charge and says its programme is for peaceful purposes.

The US and Iran have had no diplomatic relations following the 1979 Islamic revolution.

Editor:Zheng Limin |Source:

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