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September 1, 2009

Report: Iran accepts invitation to nuke talks, meets September deadline

According to various media accounts, Iran’s nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili has accepted the invitation to another round of nuclear negotiations, seemingly in time to avoid a push for tougher gasoline sanctions that had been threatened by the end of September.
From BBC:

Iran has prepared an updated nuclear proposal and is ready to hold negotiations with world powers, state-run Iranian television quoted the Islamic Republic’s chief nuclear negotiator as saying on Tuesday.
U.S. President Barack Obama has given Iran until later this month to take up a six-power offer of talks on trade benefits if it shelves nuclear fuel production, or face harsher sanctions

Jalili told Iran’s Arabic-language television network al-Alam that “Iran has prepared an updated nuclear proposal and is ready to resume negotiations with world powers.” Iran’s proposal, Jalili said, could “serve as a basis for talks” with the Western powers.
If these statements are true–and are not retracted in the coming days–then this appears to be an unambiguous signal from Iran that they are willing to accept the invitation to nuclear talks.  According to President Obama’s stated deadline, Iran has until the end of the month to schedule talks–not, as many are sure to claim, to suspend its enrichment program.

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