Iran rejects any halt of nuclear enrichment

By Xinhua,

Tehran : Iran’s government spokesman Gholam Hossein Elham said on Saturday that the country will reject any nuclear deal offered by major world powers that demands a suspension of its uranium enrichment, the official IRNA news agency reported.

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“Iran’s stance is clear. The precondition of a halt and suspension of nuclear activities cannot be brought up,” Elham said, as European Union (EU) foreign policy chief Javier Solana is in Tehran on Saturday to present a new offer over Iran’s disputed nuclear program.

“If it exists (a demand for a suspension of enrichment), it cannot be considered at all…if the issue of suspension is relied upon, the (nuclear) issue will not change,” said Elham.

Iran will make its decision on the package “after a precise examination,” he added.

Solana arrived in Tehran late on Friday for talks aimed at solving Iran’s standoff with the West over its nuclear program.

Representatives of five of the six main powers — Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia — will also take part in the talks. The United States is absent from the talks because it has no diplomatic relations with Tehran since Iran’s 1979 Islamic revolution.

Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United States agreed weeks ago on an updated offer of incentives for Iran based on the 2006 version, which is aimed to encourage Iran to halt uranium enrichment.

Prior to his departure, Solana said in a statement that he would make “a generous and comprehensive offer” to Iran showing the desire of the EU and the six major powers “to develop a constructive and cooperative relationship with Iran in the nuclear field and in many other areas.”

The West believes that Iran aims at developing nuclear weapons, while Tehran insists its nuclear program is for peaceful use.

The UN Security Council has imposed three rounds of tough sanctions on Iran for its ongoing uranium enrichment programs.