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First round of Iran-EU3 talks end

Vienna, Dec 21, IRNA-The first round of nuclear negotiations between Iran and the European Union trio -- Britain, France, Germany -- ended behind closed doors at the premises of the French Embassy in Vienna on Wednesday.

The second round is expected to open at the residence of Iran's representative office in the Vienna-based International Center at 16:00 hours local time (18:30 hours Tehran time).

Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Deputy for International Affairs Javad Vaeedi heading the Iranian who heads the negotiating team told IRNA that during the talks the two sides expressed their outlooks on Iran's nuclear activities.

He added that the first round provided the negotiating parties with a good opportunity to get an idea on each other's approach towards the issue.

Saying that the second round will be held this afternoon, he noted that it is too soon to make judgment on the negotiations, since the matters discussed during the first round and the attitude of the negotiating parties are now being examined.

In response to a question whether the Iranian negotiation team presented a new proposal to the European negotiators, he said, "Let me disclose the issue and further talks on the agenda of today's second round of talks more precisely once the afternoon session is over."

The SNSC Deputy for Economic Affairs Mohammad Nahavandian, Deputy Head of Iran Atomic Energy Organization for International Affairs Mohammad Saeedi, Iranian Permanent Representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Mohammad-Mehdi Akhoundzadeh and Deputy Director-General for Political and International Affairs of the Foreign Ministry Ali-Asghar Soltaniyeh are the other members of the Iranian delegation.

The European negotiating team comprises 12 senior experts and managers from the German, French and British foreign ministries.

The nuclear talks between Iran and Europe were suspended in August by the European side following Iran's announcement it was resuming uranium enrichment at its uranium conversion facility (UCF) in Isfahan.

The talks will mainly focus on whether to resume nuclear talks in January 2006 or suspend them.

According to European diplomats, this round of talks is merely considered as a "dialogue for dialogue."

Iran rules out pre-conditions in nuclear talks

Tehran, Dec 21, IRNA-Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said in Tehran on Wednesday there can be no pre-conditions to Iran entering into nuclear talks with the European countries, adding that Iran's stand has been well defined.

The (nuclear) talks are quite serious and should follow a timetable, Mottaki told reporters when the Iranian nuclear team and the European Union delegation began their first round of nuclear talks in Vienna an hour ago.

The topics of the talks are clear and the talks will proceed if our European friends are determined," he noted after visiting Iranians chemically disabled in the imposed war in a hospital in northern Tehran.

"We do not want the talks just for the sake of holding talks.

"Iran's position that its nuclear activities should not be distracted by preconceived allegations of intention and Europeans should reaffirm Iran's right to obtain access to nuclear technology for peaceful ends are the two main points of contention in the talks" that are now under way in Vienna, he stressed.

The kind and nature of activities in the UCF of Isfahan cannot be classified as "enrichment" and activities there will continue, he declared in response to a question of whether activities in the Isfahan UCF will continue given that talks are under way in Vienna.

He underlined the necessity of "enrichment and completion of the nuclear fuel cycle on Iranian territory, saying, "The technology that is to be used has become a local science."

... Payvand News - 12/21/05 ... --

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