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The Bushehr Nuclear plant was started by the Germans years ago, but following outright condemnation from several countries, including the United States, it was abandoned. It was then taken over by Russia in 1995; and it’s being completed this year after some setbacks including the German withdrawal and the Iraqi-Iranian war prevented the initial completion time of 1999 from being realistic.
Iran has declared that the programme is a peaceful one, and that the plant would be loaded with Uranium fuel. It is also expected to start generating its first electricity in the next one or two months. The fuel for the plant’s operation is being lifted to the area under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
However, as the country struggles to convince the international community that its Nuclear facility is for a civilian purpose, it went ahead to successfully test-fire new surface-to-surface missiles; making one to question how peaceful this programme really is.
The United States has always condemned Iran’s desire to develop a nuclear plant. Nevertheless, there have been some concerns that the same US is negotiating with Vietnam to enable the latter build a nuclear facility. The American Secretary of states, Hilary Clinton was said to have gone to Vietnam recently for that purpose.
Now the question is who is really deceiving who? How could the US be condemning one country for trying to build a nuclear site and at the same time they are aiding another one to do same? Why would the G8 and the EU think of applying sanctions against Iran, but Russia which helped to complete the project is a member of the G6 and the EU? Is there really a concern for the safety of the world’s populace or there is a concern for how much money could be made from these controversial programmes?
How do we prevent more frictions?
It is clear that the G6 does not speak with one voice; if America condemns a programme or policy, the same programme would be supported either by Russia or by France, and vice versa. To prevent these security threats from coming up from time to time, the following should be done:
1. Speaking with one voice: The constitution or whatever rules that govern the G8, EU, The UN Security Council, etc should be reviewed so as to make all members speak with one voice on every matter brought before them. It is paramount that when a case is presented before the G8, if it is not conclusively or unanimously resolved, no member should go behind to support such programme. For instance, if Russia hopes to carry out a project for a country, it should be free to negotiate with the country; thereafter, it should present it before the Group of 8 and make sure every member accepts it before going ahead to execute it. It should also be made clear that once a member of the Group of 8 has negotiated with that country, and the project fails to be approved, no other member of the body should be allowed to renegotiate with the country or execute the same project. In the event that the problem is later resolved, the country which initially negotiated the project should be the one to execute it. This would help to prevent in-house betrayals.
2. Sanction: Should any member of the G8 go ahead to execute a project that was not resolved amicably, the others should impose sanctions against her. This would also reduce the impunity with which members are executing projects against the decision of the body.
3. Strict Monitoring: Countries with uranium and other resources which are capable of causing security threats should be strictly monitored to ensure that these products are not sold to the wrong people. The moment it is established that there is any form of negotiation to acquire these resources without the approval of the Security arm of the UN or the Group of 8, such countries should be cautioned immediately or sanctions should be applied when necessary. They should not wait until after the programmes are ready for use before contemplating sanctions.
4. Co-operation: All countries should co-operate with the UN Security Council, The G8, EU, AU, etc to make any sanction imposed on a country to be effective. When there are countries doing business with a sanctioned country, the purpose of the sanction would not be achieved.