Germany says Tehran's response to nuclear offer "unsatisfactory"

Iran Materials 6 August 2008 20:38 (UTC +04:00)

Germany Wednesday rejected Iran's response to an offer of negotiations over its nuclear programme, reported dpa.

The German government saw as "unsatisfactory" Tehran's response to the offer put forward jointly by the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany, in cooperation with the European Union, Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said.

"We underlined through this offer that we were striving for a diplomatic solution to the nuclear dispute," Steinmeier said.

The major powers were sticking to the dual strategy of offering incentives to Tehran while warning that the Security Council would take up the issue again, he said.

On Tuesday, Iran delivered a message to EU officials in Brussels to the effect that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) could send an inspection team to Tehran.

An unnamed Iranian official confirmed that a message was delivered through Iranian Ambassador Ali-Asghar Khaji but said that the message was not, as initially reported by the local media, a reply to the offer by the world powers.

The offer by the five UN veto powers plus Germany is for far- reaching economic cooperation with Iran, including in the field of civilian-sector nuclear power, in return for a pledge by Tehran to refrain from uranium enrichment activities.

On Monday, the United States warned that Iran would face new Security Council sanctions if it did not accept the offer of fresh talks and incentives.