Iran voices hope for restarting nuclear talks with world powers in near future

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VietnamNet English - 28 month(s) ago 3 readings

Iranian Foreign Minister Ali-Akbar Salehi voiced his hope on Wednesday that nuclear talks between Tehran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany will be held in the near future.

"Preparatory work has been done to go ahead with nuclear talks and consultations are underway to take next steps. I hope negotiations with the G5+1 will be held in near future," said Salehi, quoted by the official IRNA news agency.

On Wednesday, Salehi also told the semi-official Fars news agency that his country is ready to resume negotiations with the G5+1. He also announced that Tehran will soon send a letter to the six world powers to express its readiness for talks.

"Mr. (Saeed) Jalili as Iran's chief nuclear negotiator had earlier announced his readiness to hold talks with the G5+1 and he will announce this once again," he was quoted as saying.

"We hope that the meeting will be held not in a far future," he said.

Nuclear talks between Iran and the G5+1 in Istanbul in January 2011 failed to reach any agreement as Tehran rejected any notion of suspending enrichment in exchange for trade and technology benefits, as called for by several UN Security Council resolutions passed since 2006.

After fresh sanction pressures were exerted on Iran's oil exports and its central bank by the European Union (EU), Turkey and Russia last week called for a "sooner" resumption of nuclear talks over Iran's sensitive nuclear program.

Amid increasing tensions between Iran and Western countries over a string of issues in the past several months, a high-ranking IAEA delegation, headed by chief inspector Herman Nackaerts, arrived in Tehran for talks.

The talks were held behind closed doors and no details about its process or outcome were released.

Sadeq Zibakalam, a professor of political science with Tehran University, told Xinhua several days ahead of the IAEA delegation' s visit that he was hopeful the talks over the country's nuclear issue will restart soon. "We are hoping that there might be some compromises," he said.

Salehi said Wednesday that the team of experts from IAEA did not inspect Iranian nuclear sites although the Islamic Republic was ready to arrange for inspections.

"We were prepared to make arrangements for inspection, but they did not want to do so," he said.

Iranian media termed the three-day talks between Iranian officials and the IAEA team that ended on Tuesday as "positive and constructive."

On Tuesday, Fars said that the IAEA and Iran agreed to continue their talks regarding the Islamic republic's nuclear program.

After returning to Vienna on Wednesday, Nackaerts told media that the team of IAEA experts had a "good" trip to Tehran.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said Wednesday that another meeting between the UN nuclear watchdog and Iran over its nuclear program will take place in Tehran from Feb. 21 to 22.

"The agency is committed to intensifying dialogue. It remains essential to make progress on substantive issues," IAEA chief Yukiya Amano said in a statement.

During the newly-concluded talks, the IAEA also discussed with Iran the topics and initial steps to be taken, as well as associated modalities, he added.

VietNamNet/Xinhuanet

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