Top official: Western countries turn talks with Iran into 'political show'
Azerbaijan, Baku, July 2 / Trend T.Jafarov /
The United States and other Western countries have turned the negotiations on Iran's nuclear program into a political show, Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said at a press-conference in Baku today.
"The U.S. and other Western countries have turned the talks into a political show, as they don't understand their essence," Larijani said." We welcome the negotiations between Iran and Western countries."
He said the negotiations should be conducted under conditions accepted by both parties, and the U.S. is using them as a tool to achieve its goals.
Iran's nuclear program has caused concern since 2003, when the IAEA became aware of its concealed activity. In late 2003, Iran signed the Additional Protocol to the NPT and voluntarily announced about the suspension of uranium enrichment. However, it returned to this activity. Iran insists that as a party to the NPT it has the full right to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.
The enriched uranium can be used to produce nuclear weapons. However, it is necessary as fuel for atomic power plants. Several countries, including the U.S., are sure that Iran strives to develop nuclear weapons and call for the prevention of this development.
Tehran has denied all charges, saying that its nuclear program has peaceful purposes.
Until now, the UN Security Council adopted six resolutions to stop the nuclear program of Iran and the process of enriching uranium. Four of these resolutions provide economic sanctions against the country.
Following a 14-month break, the talks on Iran's nuclear program between The Six (five UNSC permanent members - the United States, China, Russia, France, Great Britain - and Germany) and Iran took place in 2010 in Geneva in December. The next round of discussions took place in Istanbul on Jan. 21-22, 2011. Catherine Ashton chaired the meeting.
After the Istanbul talks, Ashton stated that she is disappointed with the results of discussions held over Iran's nuclear program.