Turkish premier casts doubt on visit to Iran for nuclear talks

Istanbul – Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Friday that a joint trip with Brazil’s president to Iran for talks on its nuclear programme is unlikely, Turkish media reported.

Turkey and Brazil have been working to create a diplomatic solution to the controversy over Iran’s uranium enrichment. Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is expected to go to Tehran on Sunday for talks on a uranium exchange deal that could help Iran avoid UN sanctions.

Although Iranian media had suggested that Erdogan would also be coming, the Turkish premier said that is not the case.

“My foreign minister can go (to Iran) if necessary, or I can go as well. But at the moment I have no plans for such a trip,” Erdogan said. “Because so far, Iran has not taken a step on the matter.”

“We have expectations about the matter,” Erdogan added, saying Turkey has asked the Iranian government to show its “determination” on the issue.

According to a plan brokered in October by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the world’s nuclear watchdog, Iran’s low-enriched uranium was to be exported to Russia for further enrichment and then to France for processing into fuel for a Tehran medical reactor.

Tehran insists that the swap should be on Iranian soil but world powers and the Vienna-based IAEA refused to have the handover take place in Iran.

Brazil and Turkey – both temporary members of the UN Security Council – have been trying to pe… >>>

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