News / Middle East

EU: Iran Agrees to Talks on Nuclear Program

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (file photo)
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (file photo)

The European Union says Iran has agreed to discuss its nuclear program at a meeting next week in Geneva.

An EU statement Tuesday says Iran's top nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili, will meet with EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Aston December 6 and 7.  Ashton's office says she will act on behalf of the United States. Britain, France, China, Russia and Germany.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says his country is ready to hold talks, but will not make concessions about its right to a nuclear program.

In a Tuesday speech, he also criticized Western nations for approving what he called an "illegal" U.N. Security Council resolution while nuclear talks are under way. He said Western nations need to put aside their "arrogance" when talks resume.

Western nations accuse Iran of pursuing nuclear technology to make weapons, a charge Tehran denies.

Ahmadinejad acknowledged this week that some of Iran's uranium enrichment centrifuges were damaged recently in a cyber attack that used the Stuxnet computer virus to tamper with electronic equipment.

Earlier this month, Iranian officials said the country's nuclear program was not affected by the malicious software. But the U.N. nuclear agency reported that Tehran was forced to temporarily halt enrichment.

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