Iranian nuclear talks in Istanbul "constructive and useful": EU leader

Iranian nuclear talks in Istanbul "constructive and useful": EU leader

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton described as "constructive and useful" the nuclear talks between six world powers and Iran ended Saturday in Istanbul, Xinhua reported.

Speaking at a press conference shortly after the meeting, Ashton said "we have agreed that the nonproliferation treaty forms a key basis for what must be serious engagement to ensure all the obligations under the treaty are met by Iran while fully respecting Iran's right to the peaceful use of nuclear energy."

The EU top official also said that the next meeting between Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council -- the United States, France, Russia, China, and Britain -- plus Germany (P5+1), will be held on May 23 in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad.

"We expect that subsequent meetings will lead to concrete steps toward a comprehensive negotiated solution which restores international confidence in the exclusively peaceful nature of the Iranian nuclear program," said Ashton.

Saeed Jalili, Iran's top negotiator, said during his own press conference that the goal of his nation's nuclear program is to produce energy, not weaponry.

He stressed that Iran "should enjoy our rights" to have nuclear energy while declaring that Iran does not pursue nuclear weapons.

Jalili acknowledged that the world powers maintain a "positive approach" in the talks, saying they advanced the "process of cooperation."

The P5+1 spearheaded the diplomatic efforts to persuade Iran to limit its nuclear program, which Iran say is purely peaceful while UN and Western leaders suspect of military purposes.

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