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Home > English > Iran Mulls EU Call for Atomic Discussions

Iran Mulls EU Call for Atomic Discussions

Tuesday 3 May 2011

Iran indicated on Sunday it was reviewing a call to join new atomic discussions with the five permanent U.N. Security Council member nations and Germany, Deutsche Presse-Agentur reported (see GSN, April 29).

European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton submitted a letter calling for new dialogue on Iran’s nuclear activities, Press TV quoted Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi as saying. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad would provide input on the matter before the Persian Gulf country releases further information, Salehi said. The location and timing of the potential meeting were still undecided.

The six world powers convened discussions with Tehran on two separate occasions in December and January, but neither gathering yielded clear progress toward resolving a long-running dispute over Iranian atomic activities (see GSN, Jan. 24). The United States and its allies suspect elements of the Middle Eastern state’s nuclear program are geared toward weapons development, but Tehran has insisted its atomic ambitions are strictly peaceful.

Iran last month said any new meeting with the six world powers could not address its nuclear program (see GSN, April 19; Deutsche Presse-Agentur/Monsters and Critics, May 2).

Meanwhile, Tehran on Sunday said it is now capable of independently generating nuclear reactor fuel and medical isotopes, Iran’s Fars News Agency reported.

"Iran has achieved self-sufficiency in the nuclear fuel production cycle and in the production of radiomedicine," Iranian Atomic Energy Organization deputy head Mohammad Qannadi said. "Iran is now in a very good stage in producing radiomedicines and if the present growing [trend] continues in the country, Iran will need no further imports."

Iran last week said it plans by next March to prepare sufficient nuclear material for operating a medical isotope production reactor in Tehran. The United States and other nations have unsuccessfully tried to arrange an exchange of foreign reactor fuel for Iran’s stock of low-enriched material (Fars News Agency, May 1).

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