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Iranians head to Russia for nuclear talks-minister

Written by: Staff
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TEHRAN, Apr 19 (Reuters) An Iranian delegation headed to Moscow today for talks on ways to resolve a dispute over Tehran's nuclear programme, Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said.

The visit follows a meeting of major powers in Moscow late yesterday that ended without consensus on sanctions because some, including Russia, wanted to wait until the UN atomic watchdog files a report on Iran on April 28, Russia said.

The United States and other Western nations accuse Iran of seeking to develop nuclear bombs, a charge Tehran denies. Iran says it is only developing nuclear energy and has a right to nuclear technology.

''An Iranian delegation went to Moscow this morning to hold talks ... about the latest situation on Iran's nuclear case,'' Mottaki said, adding the team included deputy officials from the Foreign Ministry and the Supreme National Security Council.

He told state radio the team would ''express Iran's clear stance and also discuss possible solutions which could pave the way to reach a comprehensive understanding based on a recognition of Iran's right to nuclear technology''.

The official IRNA news agency earlier reported that Iran's chief nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani, who is also secretary-general of the National Supreme Security Council, had travelled to Moscow, but officials denied the report.

Russia's Itar-Tass news agency quoted an Iranian source in Moscow as saying Larijani's deputy, Javad Vaeedi, would be heading the delegation, which would meet officials from Russia and the so-called EU3 -- Germany, France and Britain.

REUTERS SI RN2005

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