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UPDATED: 08:21, May 30, 2005
Iran's enrichment suspension depends on acceptance of EU proposal: spokesman
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Iran said on Sunday that it will continue suspension of its uranium enrichment activities if it accepts the European Union (EU) latest proposal, the official IRNA news agency reported.

"Should the authorities accept the EU proposal, we will continue suspension of the enrichment program, otherwise, some of the uranium conversion activities will be resumed," Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hamid-Reza Asefi was quoted as saying.

Asefi referred to a proposal that the EU presented in the latest round of nuclear talks in Geneva on May 25.

In the talks, the two sides prevented the already deadlocked bilateral nuclear negotiations from going further to crisis by virtually prolonging the negotiations to wait for the result of Iran's presidential elections on June 17.

Iran's chief nuclear negotiator Hassan Rowhani said on Friday that the new proposal portrays the Europeans' new position on Iran's nuclear program

Asefi said that the Geneva talks were held in a "completely different atmosphere comparing to the previous meetings."

"During the past talks, it was only Iran which has been making all proposals but they were left on the table while the European side was just wasting time. This time, however, Europeans changed their stance and raised their own suggestions for the first time," he elaborated.

The spokesman further stressed that in their new proposal, the EU trio of Britain, France and Germany had committed to present their "detailed" plan for all subjects on the bilateral technical and nuclear cooperation within two months.

"The Iranian negotiators also stressed that Tehran would never abandon its nuclear fuel cycle program and asked the EU to include the issue of uranium enrichment in their proposal for Iran," Asefi added.

The nuclear negotiations between Iran and the EU reached a deadlock after Tehran in late April threatened to resume its highly sensitive uranium enrichment activities, which it suspended in last November in exchanged for the economic and technological incentives promised by the EU.

Tehran owed its decision of resumption to repeated EU rejection to Iran's demand of keeping restricted uranium activates.

Tehran's threat was immediately hit back by the EU, which warned of backing a US-proposed referral of Iran's nuclear case to the UN Security Council, which might inflict harsh sanctions on the country.

The United States has accused Iran of developing nuclear weapons secretly, a charge rejected by Tehran as politically motivated.

Source: Xinhua

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