AFP: Iran’s lead nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani agreed in a telephone call with EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana Thursday to resume their talks on April 25, state television said. TEHRAN, April 19, 2007 (AFP) – Iran’s lead nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani agreed in a telephone call with EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana Thursday to resume their talks on April 25, state television said.
“In accepting the convening of a new round of negotiations, Ali Larijani told Mr Solana that, while insisting on its absolute rights regarding its nuclear programme, Iran is ready to negotiate with the concerned parties,” the television said.
“The two sides have agreed to resume negotiations next Wednesday,” it added without giving a venue for the talks.
The UN Security Council imposed new sanctions against Iran on March 24 after it repeatedly ignored ultimatums to suspend uranium enrichment.
But the council also charged Solana with contacting Iranian officials about the possibility of renewed talks.
The EU top diplomat has since held a series of telephone calls with Larijani in a bid to find common ground on the best framework for a return to the negotiating table.
The international community has been insisting that Iran must first suspend uranium enrichment before talks can resume, while Iran insists any suspension should be a matter for the negotiations themselves.
The sensitive process, which can make fuel for nuclear power stations, or in highly extended form the fissile core of an atomic warhead, lies at the centre of Western concerns about Iran’s intentions.
After the Security Council adopted the new sanctions tightening an earlier package approved in December, Solana stressed that diplomacy remained the European Union’s preferred means of addressing international concerns.
“The door to negotiations is open; I hope we can together find a way to go through it,” he said.