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MOSCOW, May 23 (Itar-Tass) — Russia expects concrete steps from a meeting in Baghdad for the settlement of the Iranian nuclear program, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Wednesday.
“Since the previous meeting between the Sixtet and Iran in Istanbul last March, quite serious efforts were taken to prepare thoroughly for the negotiations in Baghdad,” the minister recalled. Several meetings were held at the level of experts, who discussed detailed steps, which should be taken,” Lavrov said. “We have a clear idea about the results of these meetings that Iran is ready to agree on concrete actions within the approach, which is based on the step-by-step principle and mutual interests,” Lavrov said. “We hope that the steps, which should be taken for a real progress to the settlement, will be taken in Baghdad today,” he said. “We will develop a schedule for further joint work. But one should realize that the decision cannot be taken immediately,” he added. “This will be the process all the same, we want to achieve concrete results at each stage of this process,” the minister pointed out.
“Iran makes a step to the world community, and the world community makes steps for weaker sanctions against Iran,” the minister noted.
The negotiations between the Sixtet (five permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany) and Iran began in Baghdad on Wednesday. They will discuss Iran’s steps to lift suspicions over the military component in the country’s nuclear program and reciprocal actions of the world community to suspend and then lift the sanctions.
Secretary of the Iranian Supreme Security Council Saeed Jalili heads the Iranian delegation, EU High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy Catherine Ashton heads the delegation of international mediators.
Iranian sources assume that the consultations will not last one day and will be continued on Thursday. The Monday visit to Tehran by IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano instilled optimism and hopes for a favourable outcome of the Baghdad negotiations. He said after the meetings with the Iranian officials that Iran and the IAEA will sign an agreement for cooperation soon.
Iran believes that the Western policy of pressure on the country and the sanctions imposed on the country proved not to be efficient. The Iranian authorities refuse insistently to abolish its nuclear program, which, according to Iranian officials, is absolutely peaceful. To convince the world community of this fact Iran said that the country is ready to cooperate closely with the IAEA and carry out its nuclear program under the full control of the IAEA inspectors.