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  Monday, December 9, 2019
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Iran is ready to negotiate with the European Union
Iran is ready to negotiate with the European Union over its controversial nuclear program, if these talks were productive, Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said on Sunday.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad earlier said the Islamic Republic would hold nuclear talks only with the UN nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

"We have always supported comprehensive negotiations that are purposeful, meaningful and produce results," Mottaki said when asked about whether Iran was prepared to hold negotiations on its nuclear program with the EU foreign policy chief, Javier Solana.

The UN Security Council passed a resolution on March 3, imposing a third round of economic sanctions against Iran over its refusal to halt uranium enrichment.

Under the new sanctions, the accounts of certain Iranian companies and banks will be frozen, and goods leaving and entering the Islamic Republic will be subjected to inspections. In addition, travel bans have been imposed on five Iranian officials involved in nuclear projects.

The diplomatic standoff between Iran and the West, which at times has threatened to take on a military nature, began almost six years ago over suspicions that Tehran was secretly developing atomic weapons. Tehran has always maintained that it needs nuclear technology for electricity generation only. Two previous rounds of UN sanctions were imposed on Tehran in December 2006 and March 2007.


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