|Iran expects to see breakthrough in nuclear standoff: official||
TEHRAN – The Iranian nuclear energy chief seems confident that there would be a breakthrough in the nuclear dispute between Iran and the West in the coming months.
“As I had previously said, we are very optimistic about the process that has begun to resolve the nuclear issue, and we expect that we will see the beginning of a settlement of the nuclear issue,” Ali Akbar Salehi, the head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, told reporters on Wednesday after a cabinet meeting.
“From the information we had obtained from the past seven or eight months and also from the indications that we were seeing, we were confident that (the current Iranian calendar year of) 1392 (which ends on March 20) will be a very good year especially on Iran’s nuclear issue, and today we see indications to that effect,” he added.
Salehi also said he doubted news reports that Tehran would come up with offers to close Fordo, an underground uranium enrichment plant.
“I think it is unlikely that such a thing has been said,” Salehi said, according to the Mehr News Agency.
Salehi also described as positive the meeting of the UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) member states, which took place in the Austrian capital of Vienna on Monday.
The United States and its allies claim that Iran is seeking to use nuclear capability to build a bomb and have imposed sanctions aimed at stopping it. Iran categorically denies the allegations and says its nuclear energy program is purely peaceful.
Iran and world powers have held several rounds of negotiations which have so far failed to resolve the dispute.
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