AFP: The United States said Thursday that an informal meeting on Iran’s nuclear program would be held in London on Friday, confirming reports, after Tehran resumed nuclear fuel work that it had earlier suspended. WASHINGTON, Nov 17 (AFP) – The United States said Thursday that an informal meeting on Iran’s nuclear program would be held in London on Friday, confirming reports, after Tehran resumed nuclear fuel work that it had earlier suspended.
A State Department spokesman said that Nicholas Burns, the US undersecretary of state for political affairs, was leaving for London to meet with officials from Britain, France, Germany, Russia and others to discuss what he called Iran’s “unwelcome move” to resume converting uranium into uranium hexafluoride.
“This is an unwelcome move; one that we view with concern,” said spokesman Adam Ereli, adding that the IAEA has confirmed Iran’s return to uranium conversion efforts.
“It is the latest in a series of moves by Iran that, frankly, go against what they themselves have committed themselves to and what the international community has asked of them.”
The countries involved in the meeting are trying to persuade Iran to halt efforts to produce enriched uranium, which is seen as a sign that Tehran is pursuing nuclear weapons.
Burns will meet his counterparts in London to “hear their views, hear what they think, what their assessments are; and consider again, as I said earlier, how together we can all act to accomplish our common goal,” Ereli said.
The meeting had been signaled by diplomats in Vienna, the location of the International Atomic Energy Agency, who had said, under condition of anonymity, that China would join the Iran discussions between the United States, the EU-3 countries and Russia on Friday.
On Wednesday sources in Vienna said Iran has begun the conversion of 50 additional tonnes of uranium ore that can be turned into enriched uranium with potential military uses.