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. US says any Iran accord must end nuclear weapons
WASHINGTON (AFP) Nov 08, 2004
The United States insisted Monday that any nuclear accord with Iran must prevent the country from developing nuclear weapons and that it was in contact with European allies over a preliminary agreement with Tehran.

"The international community is resolved not to allow Iran to develop nuclear weapons. And we are committed to pursuing this through peaceful diplomatic means and this is what we are continuing to do," White House spokesman Scott McClellan told reporters.

"I have seen the reports on a preliminary agreement. We've been in touch with our European friends involved in these efforts. We appreciate their efforts.

"We're still working to find out more details of what that may be. We will see what the results are later this week," McClellan added.

An Iranian negotiator, Hossein Moussavian, announced Sunday that Iranian and European Union officials have reached a "preliminary agreement" on easing concerns over the Islamic republic's nuclear programme following negotiations in Paris.

"We reached a preliminary agreement at the experts level," Moussavian told state television from the French capital after what has been described as two days of "difficult discussions".

"This agreement is to be taken to the capitals of the four countries, and in the next days, if the capitals approve it, it will be announced officially," he said, adding that he was "not pessimistic".

Iran and the EU states of Britain, France and Germany held talks on getting Tehran to suspend uranium enrichment in order to avoid being hauled before the UN Security Council for possible sanctions.

The United States accuses Iran of secretly trying to develop nuclear weapons under cover of its civilian atomic energy program and wants the UN nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), to refer Tehran to the Security Council when the agency meets in Vienna on November 25.

McClellan highlighted that the IAEA board has five times called on Iran to fully cooperate with the international community and to suspend all enrichment and reprocessing activities.

"The board set the November deadline and this is a time when Iran should take this opportunity and comply," added the spokesman.

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