After a year in which Russian Presdient Dmitry Medvedev banned the sale of defense weapons to Iran, accused them of “behaving irresponsibly” and backed US-led moves to escalate sanctions against the Iranians for their nuclear program, Medvedev offered a surprise admission today.
“The international community so far has no information that Iran is building nuclear weapons,” Medvedev conceded today at a conference in Davos, Switzerland. He also said he had recently spoken to Iran’s president (by telephone last week) and had urged him to demostrate the peacefulness of their civilian program.
Today’s comments are fully in keeping with the repeated statements of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which has likewise said they had no evidence of such a program whatsoever. They also explain why, despite repeated claims that the program exists, the Bush and Obama Administrations have never been able to provide a shred of evidence to support the allegation.
But they must raise questions about President Medvedev’s Iran policy, which in recent months seems to be moving closer in concert with the US and largely supportive of moves to “punish” Iran for the nuclear weapons program that, Medvedev is no admitting, they have no evidence exists.
The simple answer would be that Medvedev has been doing so for diplomatic favor with the US, but if this is the case it would make today’s admission puzzling indeed.