Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Friday, September 28, 2007

Major powers meet discuss sanctions on Iran

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is scheduled to meet today with her counterparts from Russia, China, Britain, France, and Germany to discuss placing a third round of sanctions on Iran for continuing to pursue uranium enrichment, Agence-France Presse reported.

Nicholas Burns, U.S. Under Secretary of State for political affairs, said the aim of the meeting is “to chart a way ahead, a diplomatic path forward for the rest of the autumn as we seek to continue this good cooperation internationally.”

“But I wouldn’t anticipate concluding negotiations on a sanctions resolution,” he added

Sergei Lavrov of Russia urges patience in regards to Iran, and wants the talks between Tehran and the International Atomic Energy Agency to proceed before imposing any more sanctions. In response to Lavrov’s statement, State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said: “you still have an agreement on the basic strategy that is the Security Council to pressure the Iranians in changing their behavior.”

The U.N. Security Council has already passed two rounds of sanctions to force Iran to suspend uranium enrichment, but Iran still refuses to end its program, and continues to reject charges that the country is building nuclear weapons.

“Ahmadinejad says that the program is peaceful. Ultimately, we do not believe him. Everyone knows that the program has military goals,” French presidential spokesman David Martinon said, referring to Iran’s president. “We have a string of very powerful clues leading us to that conclusion.”

McCormack added: “We think the Security Council should move forward with a sanctions resolution. Now.”

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