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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Ashton's spokesman: 1st round of Iran-G5+1 talks constructive

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Istanbul, April 14, IRNA -- Spokesman for The High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherin Ashton on Saturday described the 2.5-hour plenary session of Iran-G5+1 talks in Istanbul as constructive.

Announcing the end of this round of talks, Michel Man said the talks were held in a positive and constructive atmosphere in Istanbul.

On the second round of talks, he told IRNA that the second round of talks would begin at 16:30 or 17:00 local time.

Declining to disclose any more information, Man said both sides have never reached any agreement on Baghdad or any other place as the venue of the next round of talks.

This is the second time Turkey is hosting the negotiations between Tehran and G5+1 comprising the US, Britain, France, China and Russia plus Germany.

The Iranian delegation, headed by Supreme National Security Council Secretary and chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili, arrived in Istanbul on Friday.

The last meeting between the two sides took place in Istanbul in January 2011. Iran and the G5+1 had also held two rounds of multifaceted talks in Geneva in December 2010.

Washington and its Western allies accuse Iran of trying to develop nuclear weapons under the cover of a civilian nuclear program, while they have never presented any corroborative evidence to substantiate their allegations.

Iran denies the charges and insists that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.

Tehran stresses that the country has always pursued a civilian nuclear program to provide power to the growing number of Iranian population arguing that its fossil fuel would eventually run dry.

Despite the rules enshrined in the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) entitling every member state, including Iran, to the right of uranium enrichment, Tehran is now under four rounds of UN Security Council sanctions for turning down the West's calls to give up its right of uranium enrichment.

Tehran has dismissed the West's demands as politically tainted and illogical, stressing those sanctions and pressures merely consolidate Iranians’ national resolve to continue the path.

Islamic Republic News Agency/IRNA NewsCode: 80078227

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