Iran's supreme leader says he will not be deceived by U.S. statements supporting reconciliation between the two nations. Speaking to Iranian state media, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Tehran will not be fooled by what he called a superficial conciliatory tone coming from Washington.
U.S. President Barack Obama supports
more engagement with Iran, but his administration, along with other world
powers, is also pressing the Tehran government to allay concerns over its
nuclear program by having its low-grade uranium enriched abroad.
On Monday, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said there will be no change to the international offer for sending the uranium for processing in Russia.
Clinton said Iran has a pivotal choice to make if it does not want to face worldwide isolation by rejecting the U.N.-backed nuclear fuel deal.
Iran has said it wants to hold more talks on the plan, even though world powers are demanding a quick response to the proposal.
Iran's representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency, Ali Asghar Soltanieh, said his country wants another round of discussions in Vienna, where the proposal was drafted two weeks ago. At that time, IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei gave the involved parties - Iran, the United States, Russia and France - until October 23 to approve the deal. Only Iran has not yet responded.
Iran's Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said Monday his country has asked the IAEA to establish a technical commission to evaluate the proposal to send most of Iran's low-enriched uranium to Russia. After processing, it would be returned to Iran for use as fuel in a Tehran research reactor.
Mottaki's counterparts from Britain, France and Russia - David Miliband, Bernard Kouchner and Sergei Lavrov - also said on Monday they want Iran to give a prompt response to the enrichment plan.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.
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