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Iran, Canada foreign ministers discuss bilateral issues

United Nations, New York, Sept 21, IRNA-Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki and his Canada counterpart Pierre Pettigrew on Tuesday discussed bilateral relations. The meeting took place on the fringes of the 60th UN General Assembly meeting.

Pettigrew pointed to the Canadian government's action to follow up the judicial trend of Iranian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi's death and voiced willingness if the new Iranian government would further investigate the issue to reach a settlement.

Kazemi, 54, was an Iranian photojournalist with Canadian citizenship working for a Canadian magazine. She was arrested while illegally photographing Evin Prison in Tehran and died in custody several days later.

The Canadian minister also expressed dissatisfaction over a suspension in nuclear talks between Iran and the three European states (Germany, Britain and France) and termed the trend of talks as disappointing.

Mottaki, for his part, said the appeals court of Kazemi has not announced the verdict yet, adding three branches of power are independent in Iran and and no one can interfere with the judicial body.

He expressed concern about 'travesty of justice' in Canada which cleared Canadian policeman who shot and killed Iranian national in Canada, Keyvan Tabesh, at point blank range.

Tabesh, 18, was murdered in Vancouver on July 14, 2003 by a Canadian policeman.

The Iranian minister briefed Pettigrew on Iran-EU3 nuclear talks, the Paris Agreement, the country's support for transparency and points in President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's address to the UN General Assembly to reassure civilian nature of Iranian nuclear program.

"We are surprised why the European parties present a false image to their own public opinion and the international community." "We call for continued talks with the three European states provided that both the rights and duties are regarded honestly."

... Payvand News - 9/21/05 ... --

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