Iran has not demonstrated sufficient flexibility in nuclear talks with six world powers aimed at ending a 12-year standoff with the Islamic Republic over its atomic ambitions, France and Britain said in December. The remarks at the United Nations came just after the completion of another inconclusive round of negotiations in Geneva between Iranian officials and the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China.
The first experimental firing of France’s new nuclear test super-laser took place at the end of October, allowing French – and British –nuclear weapons scientists to test warhead components and materials as part of research work aimed at side-stepping international arms control measures. On 23 October Prime Minister Manuel Valls triggered the first experimental firing of France’s Laser Mégajoule at an inauguration ceremony at the Commissariat à l’Énergie Atomique – Direction des Applications Militaires (CEA-DAM) Cesta siteat Le Barp, Gironde.Under recently agreed co-operation arrangements, scientists from the UK’s Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) will be able to undertake research work at the Laser Mégajoule alongside their French colleagues.
Russia would violate international agreements if it placed nuclear weapons in Crimea, which it annexed from Ukraine, Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk said in December. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov appeared to reserve the right for Russia to put nuclear weapons in Crimea in comments to Russia’s Interfax news agency. Lavrov said while Crimea had been part of nuclear weapons-free Ukraine,that was no longer the case and the peninsula was no longer a non-nuclear zone under international law.