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8/29/06

France Urges Iran To Resolve Nuclear Crisis

August 28, 2006 -- French President Jacques Chirac called on Iran today to take constructive steps toward resolving its nuclear crisis with the international community.

Chirac's comments in Paris come ahead of a UN Security Council deadline on August 31, by when Iran must suspend uranium enrichment or face possible sanctions.

Chirac urged Iran to build "the conditions for trust" of the international community.

"Iran is a great country," he added. "But, the recognition of this role also gives it an obligation, that of easing fears and working for regional stability, as befits a great and responsible country."

In Tehran, Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad reiterated that Iran will not surrender its right to pursue peaceful nuclear technology.

Meanwhile, Iran's chief nuclear negotiator, Ali Larijani, today reiterated Tehran's readiness to hold "constructive talks" on the nuclear issue with the United States and other key nations.

However, Larijani said on August 27 that Iran considers uranium-enrichment suspension as a red line it will not cross and that it will continue with nuclear-fuel production.

(compiled from agency reports)


Copyright (c) 2006 RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036. www.rferl.org

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