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China urges further negotiations on Iran nuclear issue
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09:35, September 15, 2007

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China urged Iran on Friday to continue negotiations with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), saying it hoped to see "a positive outcome" on the Iranian nuclear issue.

"We would advocate a peaceful resolution of the Iranian nuclear issue through negotiation," Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi said in talks with visiting Iranian Interior Minister Mostafa Pour-Mohammadi on Friday afternoon in Beijing.

"China opposes the proliferation of nuclear weapons," Yang told Pour-Mohammadi, saying it appreciated the working plan reached by Iran and the IAEA and hoped Iran could conduct all-round and full cooperation with the agency to achieve positive results as soon as possible.

In a later meeting, Chinese State Councilor Tang Jiaxuan also stressed that China would back Iran's efforts to develop cooperation with the IAEA, calling for the parties involved to positively respond to international concerns and make efforts to prevent the situation from further worsening.

Tang said China would continue to play a constructive role on the issue to safeguard the international nuclear non-proliferation system and resolve the issue through diplomatic negotiation.

As special envoy of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Pour Mohammadi arrived here on Thursday for a two-day visit.

In a press conference after the meetings, Pour Mohammadi said Iran would be willing to deepen cooperation with the IAEA according to international rules and regulations as well as the NPT (Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty).

Pour Mohammadi said he already briefed the Chinese side on details of the working plan agreed with the IAEA last month and the two sides reached consensus that solving the disputes within the IAEA framework through peaceful methods was "the most effective way out".

Chinese experts believe that Pour Mohammadi's China visit was to explain Iran's position on the nuclear issue.

Iran wanted recognition of its nuclear capability by Western countries, which it believed would help to expand its role and influence in the Middle East, said Yin Gang, researcher with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS).

However, China only promised to support Iran's right to peaceful utilization of the nuclear power, which could be interpreted as an indication for Iran not to overdevelop its nuclear programs, Yin said.

The Iranian envoy's China trip followed a meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) governing board in Vienna to discuss a deal reached last month between Iran and the UN nuclear watchdog that demands Iran answer outstanding questions about its nuclear program.

The report also says Iran has not halted uranium enrichment.

The United States and other Western countries have accused Iran of trying to develop atomic weapons under a civilian cover, but Iran denies the accusation, saying it just wants to generate electricity.

The U.S. State Department said on Wednesday that it was working with other members of the UN Security Council as well as Germany to pass a new resolution on Iran with more sanctions.

"Sanctions are not the most effective measures to solve problems," Pour Mohammadi said in an interview with Xinhua on Thursday evening.

"We will conduct nuclear activities, abiding by a series of international laws and regulations and we consider it is beneficial to us as well to cooperate with the international community," Pour Mohammadi said through an interpreter.

Source: Xinhua

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