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Iran: Preparing for Nuclear Talks with EU Foreign Policy Chief Next Week

Iran says its top nuclear negotiator is to meet European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana next week to discuss Tehran's disputed nuclear program.

A spokesman for Iran's Supreme National Security Council has told Iran's state-run news agency (IRNA) meeting will take place in Geneva on July 19.

Solana and Iranian negotiator Saeed Jalili are expected to discuss a new package of incentives Solana presented Iran last month to persuade Tehran to stop its nuclear activities.

The United States says the incentives offer Iran a chance to begin nuclear negotiations without initially suspending its uranium enrichment program.

Iran has offered a more general counter-proposal on ways to solve the world's problems, including the nuclear standoff.

The U.S. and other Western countries allege Iran is trying to make nuclear weapons. Tehran denies the charge.

Tensions over Iran's controversial nuclear work intensified this week after Iran tested several medium and long-range missiles, including one that could hit Israel.

The European Union has joined a chorus of concern over the missile tests. A statement from the 27-member group Friday says the missile tests can only compound the worries of the international community about Iran's nuclear ambitions.

The U.S. and Israel warned Iran this week that they are prepared to defend themselves against threats.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.