News

World Powers Offer to Resume Iran Nuclear Talks

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton (File Photo).
EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton (File Photo).

Six world powers have offered to resume long-stalled talks with Iran to address Western suspicions of a military dimension to the Iranian nuclear program.

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton says she made the offer to resume talks in a letter sent to Iranian nuclear envoy Saeed Jalili on Tuesday. Ashton has been leading negotiations with Iran as a representative of the five permanent U.N. Security Council members - the United States, Britain, France, China and Russia - as well as Germany.

In her letter, Ashton says the goal of the six powers remains a "negotiated, long-term solution which restores international confidence in the exclusively peaceful nature of Iran's nuclear program."

Israel and Western powers accuse Iran of trying to develop nuclear weapons under cover of a civilian energy program, a charge Tehran denies. Israel sees a nuclear-armed as Iran threat to its existence and refuses to rule out military action to prevent Tehran from developing a nuclear weapon capability.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu held separate meetings with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and congressional leaders in Washington on Tuesday to discuss how to respond to Iran's nuclear activities.  There was no immediate word on the outcome of the Clinton-Netanyahu meeting.

After meeting Republican and Democratic leaders of Congress, Netanyahu praised them for what he called their "clarity, courage and wisdom." Congress has long showed strong bipartisan support for Israel's security concerns.

In a speech to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee late Monday, Netanyahu said Israel cannot afford to wait much longer for diplomacy and sanctions to pressure Iran. Iranian state news agency IRNA says Deputy Foreign Minister Hoseyn Abdollahian rejected the Israeli leader's remarks as "bellows of fear."

In a White House meeting earlier Monday, President Barack Obama urged Netanyahu to give diplomacy and sanctions more time to curb Iran's nuclear ambitions. Obama also reiterated his position that all options are on the table to stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.

Obama administration and Israeli officials have expressed differing views about what might trigger military action against Iran's nuclear sites. U.S. officials have said Washington may act if Iran makes a decision to assemble a nuclear bomb, while Israeli officials have said military action may be needed sooner, to prevent Iran from putting the pieces of a bomb beyond the reach of an attack.

The EU's Ashton says the six powers and Iran must agree on a time and venue for the nuclear talks, which have been stalled since January 2011. Iranian envoy Jalili had sent a letter to Ashton last month, pledging Iran's readiness to restart talks on the nuclear issue.

VOA's U.N. correspondent says a diplomat told her last week that a new round of talks is unlikely to be scheduled until April at the earliest.

Iran's government said Tuesday it is willing to provide U.N. nuclear experts with conditional access to a military complex they suspect of being used for research towards developing nuclear weapons. A U.N. watchdog delegation had requested access to the Parchin site during visits to Iran in January and February, but Iran refused.

Iran's delegation to the Vienna-based IAEA says granting access to Parchin is a "time-consuming process and cannot be permitted repeatedly" due to the site's military status. It says Iran will grant such access when it resolves unspecified issues with the U.N. agency.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs