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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Larijani: West should not talk about preconditions

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Tehran, April 23, IRNA
Secretary of Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Larijani here Monday underlined that if the approach of West to Iran's nuclear issue is realistic, no preset conditions should be brought up during the talks, given that new conditions require new initiatives.

The statement was made at a press briefing after Larijani met Lebanon's former interior minister Suleiman Franjieh.

He noted that if the West is concerned over Iran's deviation from peaceful nuclear path, `non-deviation from peaceful technology' can be selected as the issue of talks during the upcoming meeting, given that Iran is willing to eliminate such worries.

Responding to a question about the place of his meeting with the EU Foreign Policy Chief Javier Solana, he said that they will meet in Turkey, given that Turkish officials are to mediate between Iran and Europe.

While laughing, Larijani said, "We had to select a place for the meeting and this can be justified that Turkey is situated midway between Iran and Brussels."

In response to another question that the decision to hold the meeting in Turkey means that the EU does not expect such talks to produce any positive outcome, the SNSC secretary again laughed and said, "You are making the issue very complicated."

Then the reporter who had raised the question said that the issue is actually complicated.

Larijani explained that given Turkey's interest in hosting the meeting, Turkish officials requested Iran to hold the talks in their country if possible.

"After talking to Solana about meeting in Turkey, this was finalized. Meanwhile, several other countries had also expressed interest in hosting the upcoming talks," he said.

Replying to another question about the reason Vienna was not selected as the meeting venue, given Iran's will to return the case to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), he said, "I wonder why this is so important to you, while it is much simpler than that.

"Our talks were held once in Vienna, once in Brussels and we met once more in Berlin."

In response to another question that he and Solana had never met outside Europe, again he laughed and said, "Turkey is also a gateway to Europe. Of course some countries wished the meeting to be held in Germany."

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