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Iran hopes quake-experienced Japan can help build nuclear plant

JIJI

Iran expects Japan’s cooperation in its nuclear power plant construction, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Seyed Abbas Araghchi said in Tokyo on Thursday.

Iran, a country with as many earthquakes as Japan, needs Japan’s advanced nuclear plant construction technologies, Araghchi, a former ambassador to Japan, said at a news conference at the Japan National Press Club.

Araghchi said economic relations with Western countries have yet to return to presanctions levels.

Companies all around the world are paying attention to the Iranian market, Araghchi said, referring to high-speed railway and nuclear plant construction projects in the Middle Eastern country.

Countries reluctant to forge better economic ties with Iran could lose business opportunities, he said.

On Saudi Arabia, which broke off diplomatic ties with Iran in January, Araghchi said Tehran is calling for talks on a resolution, but Riyadh has yet to respond.

Asked about the forthcoming visit by U.S. President Barack Obama to Hiroshima, one of the two Japanese cities hit by U.S. atomic bombs in 1945, Araghchi said leaders of countries that used weapons of mass destruction in the past should apologize to the world in addition to Japan and Iran.

Both Japan and Iran are victims of weapons of mass destruction, Araghchi said, referring to the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s.