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French FM: No Alternative To Negotiations With Iran --> 21 January 2005 -- French Foreign Minister Michel Barnier said today that negotiations are the only way to make Iran give up any efforts to develop a nuclear weapons capability.

Barnier, on a visit to Moscow, also said that the U.S. is being kept informed of the course of negotiations between three EU states -- Britain, France, and Germany -- and Iran over Tehran's nuclear program.

"We want to achieve a political agreement, because there is no alternative to a political agreement, from our point of view. We want [Iran] to stop all [uranium] enrichment activities for military use and renounce nuclear arms. At the same time we want to assist in the development of that country, including in the area of power generation."

He said the negotiations are being conducted "in complete transparency with 22 European partners and Russia." The three EU powers are offering to give Iran trade benefits in exchange for its abandoning nuclear activities that could lead to weapons development.

The U.S. accuses Iran of seeking to acquire nuclear weapons. Tehran denies the charges.