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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Ashton: Experts meeting to be held in Istanbul

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Moscow, June 20, IRNA -- EU Chief Foreign Policy Catherine Ashton, by referring to Iran and G 5+1 decision to continue talks said that the two sides have decided to hold experts meeting in Istanbul on July 3rd.

At the end of 2-day meetings in Moscow on Tuesday evening, Ashton told reporters that given efforts of both sides in the nuclear negotiation to remove existing concerns, G 5+1 expects Iran to act in the framework of Non-Proliferation Treaty and the UN Security Council resolutions.

She added that in this direction we underlined presented proposals in Baghdad meeting to Iranian side and we expect Iran to stop enrichment of uranium 20 percent, closure of Fordow site and transfer enriched 20 percent uranium abroad.

Ashton continued that we consider this request as a step toward confidence building by Iran.

The EU foreign policy chief said that during 2-day intensive talks with Iran we answered Iranian questions and they addressed our questions and concerns.

She added that there is a big gap between the two sides stances in content, so we reached agreement to hold experts talks in Istanbul to reach an accurate understanding from our existing problems and issues.

After experts meeting in Istanbul, Ali Baqeri and Helga Schmid will have a meeting and finally Saeed Jalili and I will talk about outlooks of the negotiation, Ashton said. Then after these meetings we decide that whether Iran wants to act upon our three proposals and help to reach a diplomatic agreement or not.

Answering a question if the talk had no progress, so why you decided to continue the negotiation, Ashton said that during Moscow talks Mr. Jalili and I constantly underlined that we do not want talks just for talks.

She stressed that for the first time the Iranians talked about content in Moscow meeting, but we have still a long way to go and holding experts meeting in Istanbul is a step in this direction.

The EU high representative said that Istanbul meeting would be a suitable opportunity for detailed discussion of experts and finally we will take decision upon action on the three proposed steps.

By holding experts meeting, we want issues to be considered by experts in nuclear issues and then we answer Iranian questions and they reply our questions, she continued.

The official said that for continuation of discussions we need a better understanding of each other and this would be through consideration of issues by experts and their report to the negotiating teams.

Moscow nuclear meeting between Iran and Group 5+1 was held in Hotel Golden Ring in capital of Russia and after holding four rounds of talks and several bilateral meetings ended on Tuesday evening.

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Islamic Republic News Agency/IRNA NewsCode: 80190799



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