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EU gives Iran more time over nuclear row

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EU gives Iran more time over nuclear row

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The EU is giving Iran two more weeks to clarify its position on the latest demands to halt its controversial nuclear programme. It came at a meeting of the bloc’s foreign ministers in Finland. Foreign policy chief Javier Solana is to meet Iranian officials next week to clear up ambiguities surrounding Tehran’s stance.

The ministers were also discussing energy issues and relations with Russia. Talks centred on a possible new strategic agreement with Moscow. “We want to speak and deal with Russia with one voice,” said Finland’s foreign minister Erkki Tuomioja.

“Russia is an important partner for us, a strategic partner, and I was of course very happy with our meeting here which is a good example of the kind of cooperation across the border which we want to see develop with Russia,” he added. The new cooperation agreement will cover energy, trade and human rights issues. The EU expects to be able to launch negotiations with Russia after a summit in November.