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Iran - FM: Uranium exchange file still on table

IRI Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki says he believes uranium exchange file is still on the table.

Mottaki as saying so in an interview with the reporter of the Austrian daily The Standard when he was in Vienna.

The text of the interview is as follows:

You spoke at the press conference about your meeting with the foreign minister of Austria. What were the topics of the meeting?

We exchanged constructive and positive viewpoints. Each of us comprehended the status of the other side. The Austrian foreign minister told me that this country’s priorities are negotiation and diplomatic means. We have prepared topics for the entire involved parties in this issue that can lead to trust building and the Iranian nation, too, would get assured upon gaining those parties’ replies. That is the nature of the international political affairs nowadays and that is not a one way street.

Does what you just said mean that the Iranian side, too, has a plan for nuclear exchange and for the uranium deal?

This is not a decision made overnight. It is the result of months of efforts and consultations with various sides.

Are the marginal countries, such as Turkey, still playing roles in this respect?

Exactly. Presently the important thing for us though is summing up the results of months of negotiations and declaring them. New rounds of talks can now begin aimed at easier implementation of the agency’s proposals.

Do you believe the uranium exchange proposal is still on the table?

This is not what I say alone. We are now working on completing this plan.

Is your proposal on simultaneous exchange of uranium and fuel rods still effective?

I think a comprehensive solution for doing so can be sought.

Can another party guarantee that you will receive the rods for the uranium?

We are sometimes after someone to accept to give such a guarantee and sometimes after seeking a formula to guarantee every side’s satisfaction.

You had a meeting with the IAEA chief. Are you going to meet the demands of the agency regarding your nuclear program and to facilitate the IAEA inspectors’ access to your nuclear facilities?

There are no limitations for the agency to have access to Iran’s nuclear sites.

Does the additional protocol increase the signatory government’s responsibilities?

The non-abiding parts for the other IAEA members cannot be dictated against us. We have come to an agreement with Mr. Amano that we would move in the framework of the rules and regulations. We can also talk about the additional protocol. We have signed that agreement and we had kept abiding by it for a long time. But when our file was forwarded to the UN Security Council our Parliament reacted to the move and passed a law abiding by which is obligatory for the government.

Only one constructive move in uranium exchange can halt the process of sanctions of the UN Security Council. If that would not happen, what would be your government’s move?

I hope the Security Council members will not once again pursue the former US administration’s policy. We cannot urge them to change their minds, but we can provide incentives for them to seek other paths.

If the controversy with the international community would get to more critical phases would it be possible that Iran would exit the NPT?

Our serious concern regarding the spread of the nuclear weapons proves that we would pursue materializing our right in the framework of non proliferation of the nuclear weapons.

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