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Tuesday, February 21, 2006

 

AP: Russia-Iran nuke talks stall

By HENRY MEYER, Associated Press Writer -- Tuesday, 1 hour, 47 minutes ago

MOSCOW - Officials from Russia and Iran on Tuesday ended two days of talks on a Russian offer to enrich uranium for Tehran without any signs of progress, though Russia's foreign minister declined to call the negotiations a failure.

President Vladimir Putin chairs a government meeting in the Kremlin in Moscow, Monday, Feb. 20, 2006.  Russia expressed limited hope Monday as Russian and Iranian officials started talks in Moscow on an offer to enrich uranium for Iran, seen as a final opportunity for the Islamic regime to avoid the threat of international sanctions over Western concerns it is developing nuclear weapons. (AP Photo/ITAR-TASS, Vladimir Rodionov, Presidential Press Service)President Vladimir Putin, right, chairs a government meeting in the Kremlin in Moscow, Monday, Feb. 20, 2006.  Russia expressed limited hope Monday as Russian and Iranian officials started talks in Moscow on an offer to enrich uranium for Iran. (AP Photo/ITAR-TASS, Vladimir Rodionov, Presidential Press Service)

The head of Russia's atomic energy agency, Sergei Kiriyenko, visits Iran on Thursday for further talks, which are widely seen as Iran's last chance to stave off international sanctions over suspicions it has a covert nuclear weapons program.

An initial round of consultations between top national security officials from both countries on Monday made no visible progress, and on Tuesday experts from the Russian Foreign Ministry and atomic energy agency held discussions with the Iranian side.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov underscored that the negotiations were continuing.

"I would be cautious about using the term 'failure' or 'setback' while the negotiations continue," he was quoted as saying by the ITAR-Tass news agency.

The Russian offer, which is backed by the United States and the European Union, is widely seen as the last chance for Iran to address the West's concerns before a March 6 International Atomic Energy Agency meeting that could start a process leading to punishment by the U.N Security Council.

Full AP-Yahoo News story.

Dave Haigler, Abilene, Texas
lawfirm webpage:
www.haigler.info
 
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