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Wednesday
Nov102010

Secretary Clinton: No Role for Turkey, Brazil in Nuke Talks with Iran

Sec. Clinton & EU High Rep. Catherine Ashton: Photo Courtesy - U.S. State Department(WASHINGTON) -- Secretary Clinton on Wednesday ruled out any other country’s involvement in talks between Iran and the P5+1 -- comprised of the U.S., UK, France, Germany, Russia and China -- even as Iran proposes to hold the next round of negotiations in Turkey, a country that, along with Brazil, tried to strike a nuke deal with Tehran earlier this year.
 
“It is a P-5 plus one meeting with the Iranians,” Clinton told reporters. “At this moment, the offer of discussions with the Iranians is in that forum, and that is the appropriate venue for any discussion on any issue to occur.”
 
The proposal to hold talks in Turkey can be seen as a shrewd diplomatic dismissal by Tehran, as Ankara and Brasilia have been more sympathetic towards Tehran’s efforts. The P5+1 rejected their proposed deal with Iran next year, which was similar to a P5+1 offer at their last meeting in October 2009, because Iran had continued to produce more uranium in the interim.
 
The group is expected to offer an updated deal that would provide fuel for the Tehran Research Reactor in exchange for Iran shipping uranium abroad for enrichment. The deal is similar to last year’s offer but raises the amount of uranium Iran would have to send over and would demand they halt enriching uranium up to 20 percent.
 
Clinton said she spoke on Tuesday with EU High Representative Catherine Ashton, who deals with Iran on the group’s behalf, and that the P5+1 spoke at lower levels Wednesday. Clinton said a decision would be reached soon on where and when to hold the meeting. Iran has proposed it take place in late November or early December.
 
“The location has been discussed, and I believe that High Representative Ashton will be responding to the Iranians about where that should be and on what date,” Clinton said Wednesday, adding that Ashton will determine the specifics.

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