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Chirac says talks with Iran should continue

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Riyadh, Mar 6: French President Jacques Chirac said today (Mar 6, 2006) efforts to convince Iran to stop nuclear research would continue even though Iran had 'disappointed' the international community.

''The international community as a whole has been disappointed by Iran's reactions, but it has not been discouraged despite that ... We don't give up, we actively continue our efforts internationally to convince the Iranians,'' he told a news conference in Saudi Arabia.

''The international consensus must be respected, thus the efforts we are currently making to complement those of (Mohamed) ElBaradei at the IAEA,'' he added.

Members of the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) agreed to report Iran to the Security Council last month after Tehran failed to convince the international community that its nuclear experts were intent on building power stations and not atomic weapons.

The Security Council, which has the power to impose sanctions, is waiting until after a meeting today of the IAEA board of governors before deciding what action to take.

France has held talks with Iranian officials along with European Union partners Britain and Germany, but they have not managed to find a compromise so far.

Iran says its nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes.

REUTERS

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