Iran Nuclear NewsIran says nuclear talks will be last chance for...

Iran says nuclear talks will be last chance for deal with EU

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AFP: A senior Iranian official said Monday that this week’s crisis talks with Britain, France and Germany are likely to be the last chance for the two sides to reach a deal on the Islamic republic’s nuclear programme. “Nothing special would happen” if the talks fail, national security official Ali Agha Mohammadi told the student news agency ISNA, adding that Iran would simply continue the “natural process” of pressing on with controversial nuclear fuel work.
AFP

TEHRAN – A senior Iranian official said Monday that this week’s crisis talks with Britain, France and Germany are likely to be the last chance for the two sides to reach a deal on the Islamic republic’s nuclear programme.

“Nothing special would happen” if the talks fail, national security official Ali Agha Mohammadi told the student news agency ISNA, adding that Iran would simply continue the “natural process” of pressing on with controversial nuclear fuel work.

“We would reach the conclusion that we haven’t got along with them,” said the spokesman for Iran’s Supreme National Security Council.

Emergency talks between Iranian nuclear negotiator Hassan Rowhani and the three European foreign ministers — Jack Straw of Britain, Michel Barnier of France and Joschka Fischer of Germany — are due to take place in Geneva on Wednesday, the day after an “experts” level meeting in Brussels.

Iran has agreed to hold off from resuming uranium conversion — a precursor to the ultra-sensitive enrichment process which has prompted fears of a secret weapons programme — pending this week’s talks.

Mohammadi said the holding of the Geneva meeting was “not yet definite and is dependent on the conclusion of the expert team meeting in Brussels”.

“If the expert team negotiations are considered positive and we see bright prospects from those talks, it can be said that the Wednesday negotiations will be held,” he explained.

Iran agreed in November with Britain, France and Germany to suspend its uranium conversion and enrichment activities, which Washington believes conceal its nuclear armament intentions.

However the Islamic republic is seeking to resume uranium conversion, a move that would violate its deal with the EU-3 and leave it facing the threat of UN Security Council action.

The decision to resume conversion has been put on hold pending the meetings, which were called for by the EU-3.

“We think that given the Europeans have proposed this round of talks, they should offer some plans that should be attractive for the Iranian side,” Mohammadi said.

“From our point of view, the main issue is resuming activities, not continuing the suspension.”

Iran has proposed commencing a phased resumption of fuel cycle work but that has already been rejected. The Europeans want Iran to dismantle the programme altogether — in other words the same kind of deal that Britain and the United States reached with Libya.

Iran insists its bid to master the full nuclear fuel cycle, including uranium enrichment, is merely aimed at generating electricity and is a right for any country that has signed the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

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