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Iran Seeks Upper Hand Before Talks with World Powers

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(TEHRAN, Iran) -- Iran issued a flurry of news over the weekend related to its nuclear program that international observers say was intended to put Tehran in a stronger bargaining position ahead of its meeting on Tuesday with the U.S. and other world powers.

Among other things, Iran announced it was designating 16 sites for nuclear power facilities.  That was on top of its claims of finding deposits of uranium, a key element in the development of atomic weapons although Iran says it intentions are peaceful.

Meanwhile, Tehran also acknowledged a report from last week that it had acquired advanced centrifuges to speed up uranium enrichment at its main plant in Natanz.

All this would certainly give Iran more leverage with the so-called P5+1 when officials meet in Kazakhstan.  Attempts at arriving on an agreement ended abruptly in Russia last June.

The U.S, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany appear willing to scale back tough sanctions that have devastated Iran's economy if the Islamic republic will reduce uranium enrichment.

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