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. World powers to submit new Iran sanctions resolution: diplomat
PARIS, Jan 21 (AFP) Jan 21, 2008
World powers will submit a draft UN Security Council resolution seeking new sanctions over Iran's nuclear programme "in the coming days", a French diplomat said on Monday.

Foreign ministers of the five permanent Security Council members plus Germany should reach an agreement on a draft resolution to transmit to New York at a key meeting Tuesday in Berlin, the diplomat said.

"A draft of a third resolution is just about ready," the diplomat added. "I think we will be able to transmit it to the Security Council in the coming days."

Washington and its European Union allies have been pushing for a third set of UN sanctions against Iran for defying international demands that it stop uranium enrichment activities that they fear could be used to make a bomb.

China and Russia, which have important trade relations with the Islamic republic, have been reluctant to back any more punitive measures.

The US administration's own intelligence on Iran has made it difficult to convince Russia and China that Tehran deserves new sanctions.

A National Intelligence Estimate released in early December reported that Iran abandoned its nuclear weapons program in 2003, a conclusion that undermined President George W. Bush's warnings about the Iranian threat.

Iran denies that it is seeking an atomic weapon, insisting its nuclear programme is peaceful and aimed merely at providing energy for its growing population.

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