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Iran To Halt Uranium Enrichment

15 November 2004 -- Iran's chief nuclear negotiator, Hassan Rohani, says his country has agreed to temporarily suspend uranium enrichment activities as part of a deal with the European Union.

Rohani said in Tehran last night that the suspension would remain in place as long as talks with the EU continue on a final resolution of Iran's nuclear case.

He gave no indication as to whether Iran would be willing to permanently suspend the process of uranium enrichment, as the West is seeking. Enrichment is a possible step toward development of nuclear weapons.

Rohani said Iran has sent a letter confirming its intentions to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna. The IAEA is poised to report to the UN Security Council, which could impose economic sanctions on Iran if it continues with its enrichment activities.

The United States maintains that Iran is trying to develop nuclear weapons -- a charge that Iran denies. Word of the agreement tonight comes after weeks of negotiations between Iran and the EU trio of France, Britain, and Germany.