Iran top nuclear official confirms he will visit Moscow next week
( RIA Novosti ) - Iran's top nuclear negotiator has confirmed earlier reports that he will visit Moscow next week to discuss the situation around the Iranian nuclear program.
"I do plan to arrive in Moscow next week," Saeed Jalili, who heads Iran's Supreme National Security Council, told journalists upon his return to Tehran from London, where he held talks with EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana prior to today's meeting in Paris between the six countries mediating in the Iranian nuclear dispute.
Solana said Friday he was disappointed with the London talks, adding that he "expected more" after "five hours of meetings", but Jalili described the talks as "positive."
Today, the Iran Six will discuss new tougher sanctions against the Islamic state, which has repeatedly ruled out any possibility of acquiescing to a UN Security Council demand that it halt uranium enrichment.
The UN Security Council members - the United States, Russia, Britain, France, China, and Germany - will also review the report delivered earlier this month by the chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Mohamed ElBaradei.
The document stresses the positive aspects of Iran's "nuclear dossier," saying the country has provided extra documentation, but notes that it is continuing to enrich uranium.
Iran has interpreted this as IAEA recognition of its nuclear program's stated civilian goals, and has demanded that sanctions against it be lifted.
Tehran insists it needs nuclear technology to generate electricity. However, the U.S. and other states suspect that Iran's research is aimed at the creation of nuclear weapons.
The Iran Six participants have lacked unity on the issue. While Washington has pushed for tough punishment and even hinted at a military attack, Moscow and Beijing, who have substantial business interests in Iran, have so far blocked further sanctions.
Iran's president said November 21 that the Islamic Republic would gain "a greatness that is 100 times more precious than nuclear energy," if it withstands pressure from the West over its nuclear program.
"Confronting those who speak in the language of aggression... is more important than the possession of know-how in the nuclear sphere," Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said at a rally at Ardebil, a city in the northeast of Iran.