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Schroeder anticipates "successful" EU-Iran nuclear talks

Berlin, Feb 23, IRNA-German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder on Wednesday reiterated he anticipated a "successful" outcome of the current sensitive political and nuclear talks between Iran and the European Union.

"We are expecting successful negotiations and we are of the opinion that it can be reached through diplomatic, peaceful- albeit surely tough- negotiations," Schroeder told the press following his talks with visiting US President George W. Bush in Mainz.

"We think there are chances for it," the German leader stressed.

Schroeder said the "common goal" of Europe and the US was to ensure that Iran "definitely renounces its availability of nuclear weapons".

Iran has repeatedly made clear that its nuclear program was solely for civilian purposes.

Khatami stresses Iran's right to possess peaceful nuclear technology

Tehran, Feb 23, IRNA-President Mohammad Khatami here Wednesday stressed Iran's right to get access to nuclear technology for peaceful purposes and said that the Europeans would suffer more than Iran if they decide to succumb to US pressures.

Making the remarks while talking to reporters after the cabinet's today session, he voiced his opinion that he is optimistic towards the outcome of the nuclear talks despite its slow pace of the procedure.

He noted that Iran has repeatedly told the Europeans that it will not forsake its right to get access to nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.

Referring to multiple cases of differences between Europeans as well as the high pressures the US was exerting on Iran, the president remarked that the Americans have now come to realize that they are making unacceptable claims which persuade them to regret their remarks.

Voicing Iran's readiness to enter dialogue with Europe as well as other world countries, he pointed out that the International Atomic Energy Agency has for many times stressed that Iran's nuclear activities are for peaceful purposes.

He said the enemies would suffer more damage if they decide to do anything against Iran.

Khatami further termed the public participation in the 9th presidential elections as very important and said an optimum turnout in the elections would not be materialized by sheer recommendations and issuance of directives.

Making the remarks while talking to reporters after the Wednesday cabinet session, he expressed his opinion that a massive participation of people in the elections was certainly to the benefit of the Islamic Republic and the people themselves and believed the reasons for probable low participation of people should be worked out.

Stressing that elections should be held in the best free atmosphere possible, he regretted that some people and groups were not treated fairly during the 7th Majlis elections and hoped the same would not happen again in the upcoming elections

Kharrazi: Tehran, determined to continue uranium enrichment

Tehran, Feb 23, IRNA-Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi said here on Wednesday that Tehran is determined to continue uranium enrichment process.

Talking to reporters after a cabinet meeting, he stressed that other countries cannot stop Iran's uranium enrichment program.

As to Iran's negotiations with the three big European countries of Britain, Germany and France, the Iranian foreign minister said talks are going on in order to remove the EU's concern over possible production of nuclear weapons by Iran.

He reiterated that the Islamic Republic has no intention to produce nuclear weapons.

As to the length of Iran-EU discussions on nuclear issues, he said the negotiations will be evaluated in mid-March.

Iran's evaluation of the ongoing talks will be determining, Kharrazi said, adding that the talks would go on if the evaluation was positive.

On stands recently taken by US President George W Bush regarding the regional issues, Kharrazi said all Washington's plans in the Middle East and particularly in Iraq, Lebanon and Syria are aimed at survival of Israel. He (President Bush) is well aware that the US policies are faced with severe reactions in the World of Islam, he added.

Washington is trying to make up for its mistakes in Iraq and in the Mideast region, Kharrazi said, stressing that even the EU member states do not provide the US policies with an all-out support.

... Payvand News - 2/23/05 ... --

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