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Iran FM Spokesman: Close negotiations currently going on between Iran, IAEA

Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi said in Tehran on Sunday that close negotiations are being held between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), stressing that Iran`s acceptance of negotiations is a major, positive and constructive step taken by the Islamic Republic in that regard, IRNA reported.

Talking to foreign and domestic reporters, he said the Islamic Republic has always tried and is still trying to outline the objectives of its peaceful nuclear activities.

He expressed the hope that Monday`s session of the IAEA Board of Governors would be held far from any diplomatic motives. The session is to discuss report by the IAEA Head Mohamed ElBaradei.

Answering a question on whether Iran has special suggestions for removing the existing ambiguities and concerns, Asefi said Iran`s proposals are clear.

The Islamic Republic`s legitimate right to make peaceful use of nuclear technology should be officially recognized by other countries, he reiterated.

"We continue our negotiations and hope that the two sides will follow up the case free from political considerations and prejudgment so that positive results will be achieved," the Foreign Ministry spokesman said.

Commenting on Iran-Russia negotiations on return of spent fueld, he said there is no major problem between the two sides in this regard.

Iran`s negotiations with its Russian partners still go on, he said expressing the hope that an agreement will be inked by the two countries.

On reasons behind travel to Tehran of the Iranian Ambassador to London Morteza Sarmadi, Asefi said that he came to Tehran for some consultations with the Foreign Ministry officials.

The two countries foreign ministries have close relationship with each other, he said adding that the Iranian and British foreign ministers are in full contact.

Tehran believes that the British government has realized that the arrest of the former Iranian diplomat, Hadi Soleimanpour, is not acceptable to Iran, he said adding that the case had been politically motivated from the very beginning.

Tehran has informed London of the destructive effects of the arrest, he said hoping for the unconditional release of the Iranian national.

Defending nationals, anywhere they are, is top on the agenda of the Iranian Foreign Ministry, particularly in such a case that an innocent person is accused of baseless charges.

A group of law experts from the Foreign Ministry is currently in Argentina to negotiate with the judge in charge of Soleimanpour case and the Argentinian judicial officials.

On arrest of two documentarians of the Islamic Republic of Iran`s Broadcasting (IRIB) by the US forces in Iraq, he said Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi and his British counterpart Jack Straw have had lengthy discussions on the issue. Tehran will seriously follow up the case, he added.

... Payvand News - 9/7/03 ... --

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