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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Asefi calls on 5+1 not to expect Iran anything beyond NPT

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Tehran, May 30, IRNA
Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid-Reza Asefi here Tuesday called on the representatives of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council along with Germany (5+1 Group), who are scheduled to confer on Iran's nuclear issue on Thursday, not to expect anything beyond NPT terms.

Talking to domestic and foreign reporters in his weekly briefing session, he said that if suspension of nuclear research is brought up at Thursday meeting, Iran will not accept it.

He called on Europeans and other participants of the upcoming meeting to take into view the current realities and reason while taking a decision on the issue.

In response to a question whether Iran is prepared to continue operating its 164 centrifuges but slow down the pace, he said that the number of centrifuges operating depends on the plans proposed by various countries.

About the discord on the number of centrifuges to be used in the country's nuclear research, he said that some even consider that 3,000 centrifuges are used for research, adding that therefore this is one of the points that need to be discussed.

Stressing that Iran will not give up its right to access nuclear technology for peaceful purposes, the spokesman said that Iran is willing to reach understanding through talks.

Concerning uranium enrichment at a level higher than five percent, Asefi said that an enrichment level within the range of 3-5 percent is required for production of nuclear fuel, adding that Iran has never accepted any boundaries in this respect.

In reply to another question whether the visit of Russian Security Council Secretary Igor Ivanov to Iran had to do with the short-range missiles, he said that it was aimed at talking about Iran's nuclear issue.

Asefi said that Russians believe that the case should be examined by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and that use of force should be avoided.

The Foreign Ministry spokesman said that talks on the issue with Russia will continue.

He said that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is scheduled to attend the upcoming Shanghai meeting, unless something unexpected comes up.

Asefi referred to promotion of consensus among Shanghai Cooperation Council (SCO) member states and using regional treaties to secure these countries interests, in particular those of the smaller states as some of Iran's expectation from the upcoming event.

Responding to a question whether the meeting to be attended by the foreign ministers of Iraq's neighboring states which was due to be held in Iran has been cancelled, he said that according to the draft approved in Istanbul, it will be held in Iran, but that its date has not yet been fixed.


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