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German FM hails Iran nuke deal

Nov. 16, 2004 at 2:49 PM

BERLIN, Nov. 16 (UPI) -- German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer on a visit to Guatemala Tuesday hailed the new nuclear agreement between the European Union and Iran.

Fischer, said the German foreign ministry's press service, called the deal announced Monday "an important step in the effort to address the concerns of the international community regarding the Iranian nuclear program. It opens the prospect of beginning a new chapter in the relations between Iran and the European Union."

"We expect that the International Atomic Energy Agency will confirm at the meeting of the IAEA board of governors on Nov. 25, and in future further monitor, the voluntary suspension of all enrichment and reprocessing activities by Iran," Fischer said.

Once that happened, the German foreign minister said, "France, the United Kingdom, and Germany, supported by EU High Representative (Javier) Solana, will commence negotiations in December on a long-term agreement."

Germany and its major European partners "aim to achieve a long-term objective guarantee that the Iranian nuclear program is of an exclusively peaceful nature," Fischer said. "At the same time, we want to achieve progress on a host of economic, technical, and political issues which will open the way to concrete cooperation," he added.

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