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China to Work on Possible Iran Sanctions

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The 47-nation nuclear summit in Washington seems to be off to a good start for President Obama, as Chinese President Hu Jintao has agreed to work with the US on new sanctions against Iran.

According to the New York Times, Obama administration officials view Mr. Hu's promise to negotiate on the sanctions as the most encouraging sign yet of international cooperation towards stopping Iran's nuclear program before the country can develop a working nuclear weapon. China had been hesitant to sign on to sanctions, out of fears that Iran could cut off oil shipments to the country. Meanwhile, the US has also gotten a commitment from Ukraine that it will get rid of its nuclear stockpile by 2012.

The summit is looking at ways to keep nuclear weapons out of the hands of terrorists. As the BBC reports, officials attending the meeting have heard dire warnings of what can happen if terrorists gain access to nuclear materials, and the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency says countries are not currently doing enough to protect nuclear materials from theft and smuggling. He says on average, the agency gets reports of theft or smuggling of nuclear material every two days.