Iran news headlines on Wednesday include Iran rejection of accusations on meddling in the affairs of its Persian Gulf neighbors; Iran planning to construct more nuclear reactors in Bushehr; Iran holding presidential elections digitally for the first time; Iranian leader remarks over country support of African unity and development; US announcement of concern over new Iran uranium mines and US official expectation over further reduction in oil imports from Iran.
Iran dismisses accusations by Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird that the Islamic Republic is meddling in the affairs of its Persian Gulf neighbors.
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said on Wednesday that Baird’s claims indicate “his lack of knowledge of the realities in our country and the region.”
Iran plans to build more nuclear power reactors in an earthquake-prone coastal area, Iranian media said on Wednesday, a day after a strong tremor struck the region close to its only existing such plant.
Tuesday’s 6.3-magnitude quake hit 89 km (55 miles) southeast of the port of Bushehr, killing 37 people and injuring more than 900 as it flattened small villages. The dead included eight children under the age of 10.
All registrations for Iran’s upcoming elections in June will be carried out digitally for the first time, Interior Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar said on Wednesday.
Najjar added that a comprehensive system has been set up for electronic election processing management, Fars news agency reported.
The Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has reiterated Iran’s positive perspective toward African nations, emphasizing Iran’s support for the development and unity of African states.
In a Wednesday meeting with the visiting Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza and his accompanying delegation in Tehran, Ayatollah Khamenei further pointed to hostile efforts of some European countries and the United States in colonizing African countries, hatching conspiracies, and sowing discord among African nations.
The United States reacted with concern Wednesday after Iran unveiled a new uranium production facility and two extraction mines, but said it had not been “blindsided” by the news.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad hailed the advances on Tuesday and boasted of mastery over “the entire chain of nuclear energy” only days after talks with world powers on its disputed nuclear programme ended in deadlock.
The United States expects importers of Iranian crude oil to make further significant cuts in their purchases, a senior U.S. official said on Wednesday, though she noted that there are seasonal fluctuations.
“I do expect that reductions in the importation of oil will continue,” the senior State Department official told reporters on condition of anonymity.
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