Iran will not abandon its atomic goals because of U.N. sanction resolutions that are "just a pile of papers", President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Wednesday.
The Security Council has imposed two sets of limited sanctions because of Iran's failure to heed a demand to halt nuclear work the West believes is aimed at building atomic bombs. Tehran denies any such military plans.
"Some people tell us Iran's case is at the (U.N.) Security Council but we tell them those (decisions by the Council) are just a pile of papers. They don't have any value for us," Iran's ISNA news agency reported Ahmadinejad as saying.
Iran's new chief nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili, held talks in Rome on Tuesday with European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana, who is representing world powers in a bid to end the atomic row.
Both sides described those talks as "constructive". Further discussions are expected by the end of November.
"The Islamic Republic of Iran works in the framework of the law. As we have said we want to talk and negotiate and we are ready to answer if there are any questions or ambiguities," Ahmadinejad told reporters after a cabinet meeting, ISNA said.
Six world powers have agreed to delay any further U.N. penalties until at least November. They want to see if Iran is cooperating with the U.N. watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency, in answering questions about Tehran's nuclear intentions and to await a report by Solana.
In comments carried by Iran's Mehr News Agency, Ahmadinejad said Iran was ready to consider "constructive" proposals from Europe but said they should not adopt the "devilish behaviour" pursued by the United States, Iran's arch foe.
The United States says it wants a diplomatic solution to the standoff but has not ruled out military action if that route does not work.
The president does not have the final say in nuclear policy or other matters of state in Iran. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has ultimate authority and has also said in the past that the Islamic Republic would not buckle under pressure. ( Reuters )