Iran ready to start talks on nuclear issue "without delay": spokesman

01:04, July 27, 2010      

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Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said Monday that Iran is ready to start the nuclear talks "without delay," the semi-official ISNA news agency reported.

"About nuclear fuel swap and talks with Vienna group, we are ready to start the talks without delay and in the earliest time," Mehmanparast was quoted as saying.

The Vienna Group comprises the United States, France, Russia and International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Talking to ISNA, Mehmanparast called trilateral Istanbul meeting among Iranian, Turkish and Brazilian foreign ministers on Sunday " very positive" and said that "the meeting was a move forward and a positive act to materialize the Tehran declaration."

Turkey, Iran and Brazil signed an agreement on May 17, dubbed Tehran declaration, in which Iran committed itself to giving 1,200 kg of its 3.5 percent enriched uranium to Turkey in exchange for 20 percent enriched uranium it will receive from Western countries to be used as fuel in the nuclear research reactor in Tehran. Iran would receive enriched uranium in Turkey from the Vienna Group.

"Iran's response to Vienna group (on the resumption of talks) will be sent and given to them on Monday," Mehmanparast added.

"The letter ... will be submitted (to Vienna group) by Iran's representative to IAEA, Ali Asghar Soltanieh," ISNA quoted him as saying.

Regarding the Europe's efforts to impose fresh sets of sanctions on Iran, he said, Iran has already reiterated that opportunities can be used and climate of cooperation can be made through taking correct policies, according to the report.

On Monday, the EU adopted sanctions against Iran's energy sector, foreign trade and banking in an attempt to curb Iran's sensitive nuclear program.

On July 1, U.S. President Barack Obama signed a new Iran sanction bill into law, which was described by him as " striking at the heart" of Iranian government's nuclear ability.

UN Security Council adopted last month a resolution on the Iranian nuclear issue, prohibiting Iran from investing abroad in nuclear and enrichment operations, imposing new restrictions on Iran's import of conventional arms and allowing the Iranian ships in the international waters to be checked.

Iran has reiterated that its nuclear program is aimed at civilian use.

Source: Xinhua


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