Iran Nuclear NewsIran top nuclear envoy arrives in China for talks

Iran top nuclear envoy arrives in China for talks


ImageAP: Iran's top nuclear negotiator arrived Thursday for talks with Chinese officials, just after Beijing appeared to drop its opposition to possible new U.N. sanctions against Tehran over its uranium enrichment program. The Associated Press


ImageBEIJING (AP) — Iran's top nuclear negotiator arrived Thursday for talks with Chinese officials, just after Beijing appeared to drop its opposition to possible new U.N. sanctions against Tehran over its uranium enrichment program.

China has veto power in the U.N. Security Council and ending its opposition would be key to passing a resolution against Iran, which is suspected of developing nuclear weapons. Tehran says its nuclear program is for peaceful power generation.

The Iranian negotiator, Saeed Jalili, will hold talks with senior Chinese officials "concerning the nuclear program," Iranian state television reported.

"The relationship between Iran and China is very important, and it is very important for our two countries to cooperate on all the issues," Jalili said after arriving in Beijing.

China depends on oil- and gas-rich Iran for 11 percent of its energy needs and last year became Tehran's biggest trading partner, according to Iranian figures.

China traditionally opposes sanctions. Although it went along with three earlier U.N. sanctions resolutions against Iran it has previously been a vocal opponent of a fourth round, insisting that further negotiation with Tehran was needed.

But U.S. officials say a Chinese representative made a commitment in a phone call Wednesday with officials of the U.S., Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany, to discuss the specifics of a potential Security Council resolution, and that on that basis the U.S. would press ahead with an effort to pass such a measure. The officials cautioned that this does not mean there is yet a full consensus on U.N. sanctions. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the diplomatic talks were ongoing.

"China has agreed to sit down and begin serious negotiations here in New York … as a first step toward getting the entire U.N. Security Council on board with a tough sanctions regime against Iran," Susan Rice, the American ambassador to the U.N., told CNN.

The Obama administration is hoping to get a U.N. resolution passed by the end of April.

"Of course Iran would be anxious right now," said Yao Jide, an Iran expert at Yunnan University's School of International Relations in southern China. "China will take this opportunity to urge Iran to make transparent its work on the program as bound by the treaties of the (U.N.) International Atomic Energy Agency."

Yao doubted that Iran's envoy could take a tough stance during his talks in Beijing.

"There's nothing that they can use to pressure China. China's energy programs have only started in Iran. And China has many programs in Iraq. There are many choices for China. And Iran knows perfectly well that it's not like they are the only oil supplier for China."

Associated Press writers Robert Burns in Washington and Matthew Lee at the United Nations and AP researcher Zhao Liang in Beijing contributed to this report.

Latest news

Iran’s Regime Inches Toward Nuclear Weapons

Iran’s regime is once again at the center of a dangerous escalation of the proliferation of nuclear weapons. A...

US Congress Expresses Support for Iranian People’s Quest for a Democratic, Secular Republic

Several bipartisan members of the U.S. House of Representatives have presented a resolution (H. RES. 100) supporting the Iranian...

Wave Of Poisoning Attacks Against Schools Leave Hundreds Sick

Iran has been shaken for three months by serial poisoning attacks against all-girls schools, which has left more than...

Iranian Security Forces Beat Baluch Doctor To Death

On Thursday, February 23, activists in Sistan and Baluchestan provinces reported the news of the death of Dr. Ebrahim...

World Powers Should Hear The Voice Of Iranians, Not Dictators And Their Remnants

Iran’s nationwide uprising continues despite its ups and down. The clerical system’s demise no longer seems a dream but...

The Rial Continues To Sink, Hits Record 500,000 Marks Against The Dollar

The US dollar increased in price by more than 11 percent in February and grew to more than 500,000...

Must read

Iran appoints new envoy to Congo

Iran Focus: Tehran, Iran, Apr. 25 – Iran has...

Pakistan seeks investigation into suspected Indian spy’s Iran links

Islamabad, 2 Apr - Pakistan has asked Iran to...

You might also likeRELATED
Recommended to you