Iran Nuclear NewsIran decides response on nuclear package offer: FM

Iran decides response on nuclear package offer: FM

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AFP: Iran has decided on its response to a package offered by world powers for the Islamic republic to freeze nuclear enrichment, visiting Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said Monday. PRETORIA, Aug 21, 2006 (AFP) – Iran has decided on its response to a package offered by world powers for the Islamic republic to freeze nuclear enrichment, visiting Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said Monday.

The Iranian official however gave no indication whether Tehran would accept the incentive offered by world powers to which it must respond by Tuesday.

Speaking in Pretoria where he was meeting his South African counterpart Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the top Iranian diplomat said he hoped the matter could be resolved through “cooperation, negotiation and respect for the rights of Iran.”

“We have completed our consideration and we hope, based on cooperation, negotiation, and respecting the rights of Iran to have nuclear technology, to remove any questions to catch a comprehensive solution,” Mottaki said.

He was referring to an offer of assistance and other concessions by the United States, three European powers, Russia and China to persuade Tehran to halt its nuclear fuel-processing activities, believed to mask efforts to build atomic weapons — a charge consistently rejected by Tehran.

Under a UN resolution passed early this month, Iran has until August 31 to halt sensitive nuclear work or face possible sanctions.

South Africa’s Dlamini-Zuma said her country “has consistently stated that the matter of Iran’s use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes can be resolved and should be resolved in negotiations with the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency.

“We hope that all the outstanding issues will be resolved as soon as possible,” Dlamini-Zuma said.

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