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. Iran warns against "erroneous" information on nuclear programme
BERLIN (AFP) Feb 16, 2005
Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi warned here on Wednesday against "erroneous" information about his country's controversial nuclear programme but said Tehran intended to continue talks with three European countries.

France, Britain and Germany are currently trying to persuade Iran to permanently abandon its nuclear enrichment program to produce weapons-grade uranium in return for a package of political and economic benefits.

The United States suspects Iran is secretly developing an atomic bomb and refuses to negotiate with Tehran.

Kharazi admitted that there were "differences of opinion" between Iran and the Europeans on the issue of human rights, but said that would not be an obstacle in the discussions.

"The talks must continue regardless and no erroneous information must be propagated," Kharazi said after meeting with his German counterpart Joschka Fischer.

"The talks must continue so that any remaining concerns can be cleared up.

"But Iranian interests must also be taken into consideration."

Fischer said Germany saw "regression rather than progress" on the issue of Iran's human rights record.

German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal Europe on Wednesday that he will urge US President George W. Bush to work more closely with the European nations who are trying to persuade Iran to abandon efforts to develop nuclear fuel.

Schroeder said he would use his meeting with Bush in Germany next Wednesday to ask him to narrow the gap between the Europeans' approach to the Iranian issue and the hardline position of the United States.

"We share the same goals here and in the United States," Schroeder told the paper.

"The discussion is only about the means we are using to achieve the goal."

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