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Ashton Says New Iran Talks To Begin In Mid-February


EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (second from right) meeting on the sidelines of Munich Security Conference in an image shared by Ashton's media representative.

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (second from right) meeting on the sidelines of Munich Security Conference in an image shared by Ashton's media representative.

European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton says Iran and six world powers will start talks February 18, in Vienna, on a long-term agreement regarding Iran’s nuclear program.

Ashton made the announcement after meeting with Iranian Foreign Minister Muhammad Javad Zarif on January 31 on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference in Germany.

The new talks will seek to agree on more permanent measures that will build on the November agreement in which Iran agreed to curb parts of its nuclear program in exchange for relief from some international sanctions.

The November agreement, due to last for six months, came into effect January 20.

The negotiations have involved Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council -- Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States -- plus Germany.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AFP
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