UN to impose new sanctions against Iran: US (Lead)

August 4th, 2008 - 10:53 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Aug 4 (Xinhua) The five permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany are considering new sanctions against Iran after the Islamic republic failed to give a positive response to suspend its controversial nuclear programme, the US State Department said Monday. “We are disappointed that we have not yet received a response from Iran,” State Department spokesman Gonzalo Gallegos told reporters.

“We agreed in the absence of a clear, positive response from Iran (that) we have no choice but to pursue further measures against Iran.”

Earlier, European Union (EU) foreign policy chief Javier Solana and Iranian top nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili held nuclear talks in Geneva July 19.

The US, in a break with past policy, took the unprecedented step of sending Undersecretary of State William Burns to meet Iran’s chief negotiator at the talks.

During the one-day meeting, Iran failed to give a clear answer to the package of incentives. However, both Solana and Jalili said the meeting was positive and constructive and promoted understanding of each other’s positions.

RIA Novosti adds from Moscow: On Monday, Solana and Jalili discussed over telephone on the country’s controversial nuclear programme and agreed to continue discussions launched in Geneva.

“During a conversation Monday afternoon, the parties agreed to continue discussions launched in Geneva,” Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) said in a statement after talks.

“The sides agreed to contact each other in the next few days,” it said.

Iran failed to give its reply Saturday - an informal deadline set by the six nations - to proposals designed to persuade Tehran to suspend uranium enrichment, a process that can be used in nuclear weapons production.

Solana’s press service, however, did not give details of the talks but said he would brief the five permanent UN Security Council members and Germany of Iran’s position.

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