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To end nuclear standoff, Iran works on new proposals

The top diplomat for the government in Tehran has touched on Iranian plans to resolve the dispute over its nuclear program.

Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said Saturday that Tehran had begun work on a new package of proposals that will be put forward to the West.

Click to view image: 'Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki'

"We are formulating a new package, which covers a range of political, security and international issues and can be a basis for talks on regional and international affairs," he said in a press conference with his Omani counterpart Bin Alawi in Tehran.

Iran has so far provided critics in the West with several such packages that covered various issues pertinent to politics, security and the economy.

The previous Iranian package had been presented to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, EU Foreign Policy Chief Javier Solana and the representatives of the 5+1 Group in response to a Western package of incentives delivered to Iran by Solana.

The package extended by the West offered Iran certain economic incentives in exchange for Iran halting its uranium enrichment activities.

When asked if Iran had received any message from the Group of Eight industrialized nations, Mottaki said Tehran had "not received a new message from the G8 meeting" but "would respond to that in due course… if there is a new message".

At the end of a G8 summit in Italy, US President Barack Obama said Iran must understand that world countries are "seriously concerned" over its nuclear work and that they would not wait "indefinitely" to allow Tehran to develop a nuclear weapon.

He, however, said that G8 countries are united in their decision to negotiate with Tehran to resolve the Iranian nuclear dispute.

"...My hope is that the Iranian leadership will look at the statement coming out of the G8 and recognize that world opinion is clear," Obama told the L'Aquila summit.

Obama explained that Iranian officials have time to respond to the offer for negotiations until the G20 summit, which is slated to take place in September in Pennsylvania, ahead of the United Nations General Assembly. "And I think what that does is provide a time frame," said the US president.

The G8 joint declaration called on Tehran to comply with UN resolutions that call for a freeze on its uranium enrichment activities. The joint declaration said the leaders would "take stock" of whether Iran had complied with demands for a freeze on its nuclear activities at the G20 meeting in Pittsburgh in the US in September.

Iran is a member of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and is therefore granted the right to develop a civilian nuclear program. On the issue of Western insistence that it seeks to develop nuclear weaponry, Tehran says it has no such plan.

The new Iranian package of proposal is expected to touch on how Tehran plans to prove that it does not pursue hostility with its nuclear program and foreign policy approach.


Added: Jul-11-2009 Occurred On: Jul-11-2009
By: dan_man_
Iran, Middle East
Tags: IAEA, Iran, NPT, proliferation, negotiation
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