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Entries in P5+1 (4)

Thursday
Feb212013

International Powers and Iran to Resume Nuclear Talks Next Week

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Iran will be presented with a new offer from the international group known as the P5+1 in yet another effort to get Tehran to give up its rogue nuclear program.

A Western diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity, told reporters in London that the proposal drawn up by the U.S., United Kingdom, France, Russia, China and Germany will contain elements not previously raised with Iran.

Talks are scheduled to happen next Tuesday in Kazakhstan, eight months after the last summit in Moscow failed to produce any results.

At the time, the P5+1, which is made up the five permanent U.N. Security Council members and Germany, proposed that Iran suspend production of 20 percent enrichment of uranium, a key step in developing nuclear weapons.

Iran, which claims its program is intended for peaceful purposes, turned down the request even as it suffers from crippling economic and political sanctions that have grown more severe since June 2012.

Tehran has indicated progress could be made if the P5+1 recognizes its right to operate a civilian nuclear program.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Apr142012

Looking to Calm Fears, Iran Nuclear Talks Resume

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(TEL AVIV, Israel) -- Iranian negotiators are sitting down Saturday with officials from the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council as well as Germany for the first talks about Iran’s nuclear program since last January. The talks come as the West has imposed painful sanctions on the Iranian economy as they try to avert an Israeli military strike, whose leaders view a nuclear-armed Iran as an existential threat.

Iran has signaled it may be willing to make concessions in Saturday’s so-called P5+1 – the United States, Russia, China, France, Great Britain and Germany – talks, but major progress is not expected.

“Iranian representatives will attend the talks with new initiatives,” Iranian negotiator Saeed Jalili said before the talks, according to state IRNA news agency. “We are ready to hold successful and progressive talks on cooperation.”

Of particular concern to the United States and Europe are Iran’s new enrichment facility at Fordow, buried deep in a mountain, and Iran’s enrichment of uranium up to 20 percent, just a few steps away from weapons-grade which is 90 percent.

Last weekend, the head of Iran’s nuclear program signaled it may be willing to drop enrichment to a lower level needed for power once it has enough 20 percent-enriched uranium stocked for its research reactor, which produces medical isotopes.

“I think nobody expects to resolve all differences in one meeting,” deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes told reporters on Air Force One on Friday. “What we want is a positive environment where the Iranian government demonstrates its seriousness and its commitment to pursuing serious negotiations with the P5+1.”

“We want to begin with a negotiation that can address our concerns about their nuclear program and we want that negotiation to move forward with a sense of urgency.”

Iran has long insisted it is not pursuing nuclear weapons, a claim not believed by the U.S. and Israel, which is the only nuclear-armed nation in the Middle East. Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has even issued a fatwa – a religious edict – against pursuing nuclear weapons. In a Washington Post op-ed on Friday, Iran’s foreign minister reiterated their peaceful intentions and blamed mistrust on the current atmosphere.

“To solve the nuclear issue, the scope of the upcoming talks between Iran and the P5+1 must be comprehensive,” Ali Akbar Salehi wrote. “The concerns of all sides must be addressed. Complex matters that have been left unaddressed for decades cannot be solved overnight.”

 “We want them to demonstrate, clearly, in the actions they propose that they have truly abandoned any nuclear weapons ambition,” Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Thursday.

“Of course, in a negotiation, we understand that the Iranians will be asking for assurances or actions from us and we will certainly take those under consideration.”

Iran has bristled at what they called the West’s “pre-conditions” before the talks, with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad saying Thursday that “the Iranian nation is standing firm on its fundamental rights and under the harshest pressure will not retreat an iota from its undeniable right.”

Israeli talk of a military strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities has fueled strong American and European sanctions against Iran. But so far there has been no visible impact on Iran’s nuclear program. The Israeli leadership has warned that the window before Iran reaches a “zone of immunity” – when a military nuclear program cannot be stopped – is rapidly approaching and says the talks are a stalling tactic.

A compromise in Turkey, including inspections of nuclear facilities by the International Atomic Energy Agency, could see the West relax its sanctions on Iranian financial institutions and its oil industry.

Iran has said that if Saturday’s talks are productive, a second round could take place next month in Baghdad.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Dec102010

US, Allies: More Sanctions for Iran if Tehran Does Not Engage in Negotiations

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama’s top nuclear advisor warned Iran Friday that if it doesn’t engage seriously in nuclear negotiations, the U.S. and its allies are prepared to ratchet up sanctions.

Iran met with the P5+1 on Monday and Tuesday in Geneva and the two sides are set to meet again at the end of January.

Gary Samore told the Foundation for Defense of Democracies Washington Forum Friday that “In the wake of the Geneva talks, we and our allies are determined to maintain and even increase pressure. We need to send the message to Iran that sanctions will only increase if Iran avoids serious negotiations and will not be lifted until our concerns are fully addressed.”

He also warned Iran against joining talks in order to stall tougher measures.

His comments come after Iran’s nuclear negotiator told reporters after this week’s meetings that Iran will not suspend, or even discuss suspending, its nuclear enrichment programs.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio ´╗┐

Wednesday
Dec012010

Iran Agrees To Nuke Talks Next Week

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(ASTANA, Kazakhstan) -- Iran has agreed to meet next week with the group of countries seeking to curb its alleged nuclear weapons ambitions, the EU announced Wednesday.

The so-called P5+1 will sit down with Iran’s negotiator in Geneva on Monday and Tuesday, the first such meeting since October 1, 2009. Under Secretary of State William Burns will represent the United States.

The group is expected to lay out an updated offer to Iran that would provide fuel for the Tehran Research Reactor while removing Iran’s uranium stockpile. Under the terms of the proposed deal, much of Iran’s uranium would be sent abroad for enrichment and in return Iran would receive fuel for the reactor for electricity generation. Such a deal does not allow Iran to enrich its own fuel and divert it for military programs.

The updated offer is similar to one Iran agreed to last year but backed out from. This one, however, would involve double the amount of fuel being sent out of the country to account for Iran’s continued production. Additionally, the P5+1 would demand that Iran halt enriching its own uranium to 20%, which allows it to perfect techniques needed to create bomb-grade highly enriched uranium.

“We are encouraged that Iran has agreed to meet in Geneva next week with representatives of the P5+1," Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Wednesday in Astana. "rThis is an opportunity for Iran to come to the table and discuss the matters that are of concern to the international community:  first and foremost, their nuclear program.”

Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, meanwhile, has said that his country won’t budge at the talks.
 
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