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Iranian FM arrives in Paris for talks with French officials

Paris, June 3, IRNA - Iran's Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki arrived in Paris Wednesday morning to confer with French officials.

Mottaki's trip took place based on the coordination the Elysee Palace had already made with Iran within the framework of mutual cooperation.

During the one-day trip, Iran's foreign minister will meet the Presidential Aide for Diplomatic Affairs, Jean-David Levitte, as well as his French counterpart Bernard Kouchner.

The focal point of discussions between Iranian and French officials will be the issue of non-proliferation, mutual relations and the latest regional and international developments.

Mottaki, who was welcomed by the representative of the French Foreign Ministry and Iranian ambassador to Paris at the airport, will take part in a banquete arranged by Kouchner at the end of his visit.

Dwelling upon the importance of dialogue with Iran, Kouchner had emphasized last month that the exchange of visits between the officials of the two countries was not merely necessary but a "must".

Referring to his numerous phone contacts with Iran's foreign minister, he had already said that France sought dialogue with Iran for a multitude of reasons.

Lavrov says Russia has submitted new proposals to Iran

Source: Mehr News Agency, Tehran

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday that Russia has submitted renewed proposals to Tehran and that the conditions are "truly good" for talks between Iran and the 5+1 group by considering the position of the new U.S. administration.

"We expect that the response will make it possible to create conditions for the launch of full-scale talks," Lavrov said.

Lavrov also urged Iran to demonstrate to the international community that its nuclear program was solely peaceful.

"We have confirmed the need to assure the international community of the exclusively peaceful nature of the Iranian nuclear program," Lavrov said at a joint news conference with his Israeli counterpart, Avigdor Lieberman.

"Our proposals on Iran are well known. We expect a constructive reaction from the Iranian authorities," the Russian foreign minister said.

The U.S. and a few of its European allies have been pressing Iran to freeze its uranium enrichment activities. However, Iran as a country that has signed the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), insists that its nuclear activities are solely aimed at producing electricity to meet the nation's growing demand.

The International Atomic Energy Agency is monitoring all the processes of nuclear activities in Iran by installing cameras and making regular inspections.

Obama: Iran has 'legitimate energy concerns'

U.S. President Barack Obama has said Iran has "legitimate energy concerns" provided it takes steps to prove its nuclear aspirations are peaceful. "Without going into specifics, what I do believe is that Iran has legitimate energy concerns, legitimate aspirations. On the other hand, the international community has a very real interest in preventing a nuclear arms race in the region," Obama said in an interview with BBC broadcast Tuesday.

Obama made similar remarks in Prague last month in which he said his administration would "support Iran''s right to peaceful nuclear energy with rigorous inspections".

Obama also said he hopes to see progress with Iran by the end of the year through "tough, direct diplomacy".

"Although I don''t want to put artificial timetables on that process, we do want to make sure that, by the end of this year, we''ve actually seen a serious process move forward."

The International Atomic Energy Agency is monitoring all the processes of nuclear activities in Iran by installing cameras and making regular inspections.

The use of nuclear energy is gaining more momentum as global warming, blamed on fossil fuel emissions, is emerging as a very serious threat to the environment.

... Payvand News - 06/03/09 ... --

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