|World powers hoping to reach agreement with Iran: Ashton spokesman||
TEHRAN – World powers negotiating with Iran over its nuclear program are still hopeful that a new round of talks can begin soon and an agreement can be reached, a spokesman for EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton who represents the powers in talks said on Wednesday.
“The (world powers) are still hoping to reach agreement with Iran on the modalities of the talks, including venue, with a view to resuming talks shortly,” Reuters quoted Michael Mann as saying.
However, he claimed that Iran is stalling on fixing a date and location for a new round of talks on its nuclear program, the latest round of which was held in Moscow on June 18 and 19, 2012.
Ashton’s spokesman said negotiators remained in contact about new plans.
The main bone of contention between Tehran and the West is Iran’s uranium enrichment program.
Iran says all its nuclear activities are totally peaceful, and, as an IAEA member and a nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) signatory, it has the legal right to produce nuclear fuel for its research reactors and nuclear power plants.
The major powers have demanded that Iran halt 20 percent enrichment of uranium, shut down the Fordo uranium enrichment facility, and ship all of its stocks of 20 percent enriched uranium out of the country.
Iran’s main demand is that its right to uranium enrichment, as enumerated in the NPT, be recognized.
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