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Russia: Iranian Envoy In Moscow Denies U.S. Charges

Washington, 29 July 1998 (RFE/RL) -- Iran's ambassador to Moscow has denied U.S. allegations that seven Russian enterprises had helped Iran develop its missile program. Iranian Ambassador Mehdi Safari told Interfax the seven organizations named yesterday in a U.S. executive order are not even known in Iran.

The order, signed by president Bill Clinton, bars the seven from receiving financial assistance from the U.S. or trading their goods there. The order named the INOR scientific center, the Grafit and Polyus research institutes, Glavkosmos, MOSO, the Baltic State Technical University and Europalace 2000.

Earlier, the Baltic State University in St. Petersburg denied it helped Iran acquire weapons technology. University rector Yuri Savelyev told Itar-Tass that no Iranian student or trainee ever studied in this field.

The U.S. action comes days after Iran test-fired a missile with a range of 1,300 kms, capable of striking neighboring countries. Tehran says the missile is purely defensive and that no foreign assistance was involved in building it.