Iran, Europeans to hold talks this week on nuclear issue
TEHRAN (AFP) Jun 27, 2004
Iran and the big-three European Union states are to hold new talks this week in the wake of Iran's decision to resume making parts for centifuges used to enrich uranium, officials said Sunday.

Foreign ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi said the talks with Britain, France and Germany -- which last year brokered Iran's cooperation with the UN nuclear watchdog -- would take place "in the coming days".

"The Islamic republic will have discussions with the Europeans this week." top national security official and nuclear negotiator Hassan Rowhani was quoted as saying by the official news agency IRNA.

"We are ready for dialogue and we accept the invitation from the three Europeans," he was also quoted as saying by the student news agency ISNA.

Iranian television said the talks would begin on Tuesday at the experts level, and then move on to meetings at the ministerial level.

Details on the content or aim of the discussions were not given.

The United States and the European Union Saturday called on Iran to go back on its decision to resume the construction of centrifuges, announced by Tehran in retaliation to a critical resolution passed this month at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

A halt on centrifuge work had been one of several "confidence-building" measures Iran agreed to while the UN nuclear watchdog investigated allegations the country is seekign to develop nuclear weapons.