Thursday, June 10, 2010

FP morning brief 6/10

In the aftermath of UN sanctions vote, Iran warns of "reduced" cooperation

A day after the United Nations Security Council passed a fourth round of sanctions on Iran for its illicit nuclear program, Iranian officials warned that the country would reduce its cooperation with International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors. 12 of the 15 countries sitting on the Security Council voted in favor of the resolution on Wednesday. Only two countries, Brazil and Turkey, opposed the resolution, while Lebanon abstained. Iran's government-run station, Press TV, quoted the head of parliament's national security and foreign policy committee, saying that parliamentarians would meet Sunday to "push for legislation to reduce" Iran's ties to the IAEA. He offered no further details on the likely Iranian response.

Iran is currently required to allow inspectors to visit its nuclear facility at Natanz, and inform the IAEA of any plans to expand its nuclear program. Western officials suggested that  Iran could respond to the imposition of another round of sanctions by further restricting inspectors' already-limited access to Natanz. Iran could also increase the number of centrifuges enriching uranium to 20 percent closer to the enrichment level needed to produce fuel for a nuclear weapon, said officials. While Iran currently has one cascade of 164 centrifuges producing 20 percent-enriched uranium, it has another similar cascade that it has not yet activated.

Biden weighs in on Sudan: Vice President Joe Biden, speaking from Nairobi, reiterated U.S. support for South Sudan's independence, in accordance with the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement. Biden became the most senior official to meet with the president of South Sudan, Salva Kiir, on Wednesday. He will travel to South Africa at the end of the week to attend the opening of the 2010 World Cup.

Interviews with North Koreans who fled the country paint a portrait of misery.
A NATO helicopter was shot down in Afghanistan, killing 4 soldiers.
A South Korean rocket exploded, ending the country's latest attempt to put a satellite into space.
Middle East
U.S. President Barack Obama, while meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, referred to the situation in Gaza as "unsustainable."
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad arrived in Shanghai shortly after China voted in favor of stricter UN sanctions on Iran.
Chinese companies are making inroads in Iraq's burgeoning oil industry.
The anti-Muslim Freedom Party was the big winner in the Netherland's elections, increasing its number of seats from 9 to 24.
A UN court convicted two Bosnian Serbs of genocide.
During an unannounced visit to Kabul, British Prime Minister David Cameron reaffirmed his country's support for the war effort in Afghanistan.
Shares of BP dropped 12 percent as fears grew that the company may suffer huge penalties due to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
A Pakistani man held on terrorism-related charges in Chile denied the allegations.
Honduran President Porfirio Lobo warned of a conspiracy to overthrow him.
France closed its military base in Senegal.
Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir declined an invitation to attend the World Cup opening ceremony in South Africa.
Darfur rebels freed 35 Sudanese soldiers captured during recent confrontations.

-David Kenner

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