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. Iran says direct US talks on nuclear file not on the agenda
TEHRAN (AFP) Dec 26, 2004
Iran reiterated on Sunday that it was not interested in direct talks with arch-foe the United States over its nuclear activities and said a US role in negotiations with Europe would not be "beneficial."

"There is no such thing on the agenda of the Islamic republic," foreign ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told reporters.

"Iran is not interested in an American role in its discussions with Europe and we do not consider a US presence in the talks to be beneficial," he added.

Last week, Iran's chief nuclear negotiator Hossein Moussavian had said it was important for the United States to work with the European Union over the Islamic republic's atomic activities.

In November, Iran agreed to suspend uranium enrichment in exchange for trade, technology and security rewards from Britain, France and Germany -- preventing its nuclear activities from being referred to the UN Security Council.

The deal was heavily criticised by the United States which accuses Tehran of covertly trying to develop nuclear weapons, a charge vehemently denied by Iran.

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