Iran News ...


2/12/07

EU reiterates offer for constructive relationship with Iran

Brussels, Feb 12, IRNA - The European Union stressed Monday that it would limit itself to implementation of UNSC Resolution 1737 about Iran and nothing beyond that.

"The implementation is very, very close to the resolution itself. This is the European stance as a whole," EU Commissioner for External Relations Benita Ferrero-Waldner told reporters in Brussels Monday.

Responding to a question on US pressure on European companies not to do business with the Islamic Republic, she replied that this depends on the companies themselves.

"It is not a matter of official policy. For us it is about the resolution and implementation of the resolution," she repeated.

The EU Foreign Ministers' Council will hold a wide-ranging debate Monday on Iran covering the nuclear issue as well as other sectors of our relationship, noted the commissioner.

"Very important is that we are able to reach a consensus on the Security Council Resolution 1737. The next step is of course the implementation of this resolution. Our work is advancing on the common position. I hope that today's meeting will give the necessary political signal so that we can see a formal adoption before the end of the month."

She said that if Iran accepts suspension of uranium enrichment "there are many possibilities that we have. There are lots of positive things that we can offer to Iran."

"But they are not yet there, therefore, we have to repeat and repeat our calls."

She described the meeting between EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana and Iran's top nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani in Munich on Sunday as a "very interesting gesture."

She said the EU supports a twin-track approach, that is, "refusing development of Iran as a nuclear military power but also underlining our willingness to engage."

"We would be willing to offer a really constructive relationship if we saw movement on the issues that matter to us most, which is of course also human rights, the Middle East and the question of terrorism."

"We are also keen to develop our links with the (Iranian) civil society," she said, citing the recent European Commission decision to grant scholarships to Iranian students wishing to study in Europe.

Ferrero-Waldner said said both the EU and Iran were very interested in intensifying their joint efforts to combat drug trafficking.

Iran, Switzerland discuss country's nuclear issue

Berne, Feb 12, IRNA - Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Larijani and the Head of Swiss Confederation Micheline Calmy-Rey here Monday conferred on Iran's nuclear activities for peaceful purposes as well as bilateral ties.

After participating in Munich Security Conference, Larijani left for Switzerland on Sunday night.

For his part, Deputy Foreign Minister Saeed Jalili, who accompanied Larijani, met his Swiss counterpart. The two officials discussed matters of mutual concern.

FM spokesman: Switzerland's plan to be examined if it guarantees Iran's nuclear right

Tehran, Feb 12, IRNA - Foreign Ministry spokesman Seyed Mohammad-Ali Hosseini said here Monday that if Switzerland's proposed plan guarantees Iran's nuclear right, it will be examined.

Speaking to reporters at his weekly briefing session, he said that details of Switzerland's plan has not yet been revealed and that this can be discussed.

In response to the question whether the Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Larijani is expected to meet with the International Atomic Energy Agency Chief Mohamed ElBaradei after his visit to Munich, he said that such a meeting is likely.

"These meetings provide the opportunity for both sides to declare their stance and clarify any ambiguities that may exist, given that the solution to Iran's nuclear issue can be reached through talks," he added.

About Ali Akbar Velayati's visit to Moscow, Hosseini said that he visited Russia as the Supreme Leader's Advisor for International Affairs to appreciate the efforts of Russian officials to end the current situation of Iran's nuclear issue.

In reply to a question about reduction of the level of Iran-IAEA cooperation, he said that such cooperation is legal, but that its reduction is due to political reasons.

The Foreign Ministry spokesman underlined that Iran will continue such cooperation within the frameworks of IAEA and NPT regulations.

Enrichment suspension negotiable: Hosseini

Tehran, Feb 12, IRNA - Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammad-Ali Hosseini said here Monday that all issues including suspension of enrichment can be brought up and discussed during negotiations.

Hosseini made the statement while speaking to domestic and foreign reporters at his weekly press conference.

Asked about Iran's stance on a proposal offered by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Mohamed ElBaradei on simultaneous suspension of enrichment and implementation of the UN Security Council Resolution 1737 against Iran, he said, "It has been proposed that the plan should be offered in writing so that it can be negotiable."

He added, "ElBaradei strives to present an appropriate solution to the case."

In response to a question on the US allegations against Iran on Tehran's interference in Iraq, Hosseini replied, "What have been raised and presented were weak documents that even the US officials, themselves, do not believe them. They were unacceptable."

... Payvand News - 2/12/07 ... --



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