A new round of talks between Iran and a group of international mediators on Iran’s controversial nuclear program will be held in Kazakhstan on February 25, Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said on Sunday.
“I have good news – I heard yesterday that the P5+1 or EU3+3 will be meeting in Kazakhstan on February 25,” Salehi said at the Munich security conference.
“We have never departed from the principles outlined at the EU3+3 talks. We have always insisted on the continuation of talks until a mutually acceptable resolution is adopted,” he said.
Iran and the group of countries comprising Britain, China, France, Russia, the United States and Germany, known as P5+1, have held three rounds of talks over the Iranian nuclear issue last year, following a one-year break in the negotiations.
These talks, however, did not result in a breakthrough, as the sides cannot agree on the true nature of Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.
The United States, Israel and some of their allies accuse Iran of pursuing military objectives in its nuclear energy program.
Iran rejects these allegations, arguing that as a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and as a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency, it is entitled to develop and acquire nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.
Russia has repeatedly expressed concern over the slow pace of the nuclear talks with Iran, and stressed the need for the new meeting to be held as soon as possible.
The EU3+3 grouping includes the EU3 (France, Germany and Britain) and China, Russia and the United States. It was coined when these countries joined mediation with Iran over its controverisal nuclear program. The grouping is more commonly known as P5+1, which comprises the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany.