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Rice In Paris To Discuss Iran's Nuclear Program

Secretary of State Rice (file photo) 14 October 2005 -- U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is in Paris today to meet French officials for talks expected to focus on Iran's nuclear program.

Speaking at a news conference with French Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy, Rice said the international community must send a strong message to Iran. "We have to have a very strong message to Iran, that of course there is always a course of negotiation, that is what the EU-3 (Britain/France/Germany) has been trying to do for two years. But there is also the course of the [UN] Security Council. It is a course that is available to the international community, and it is, therefore, important that Iran negotiate in good faith."

The United States maintains that Iran is using its nuclear program as a front for the covert manufacture of nuclear arms, which Iran denies.

Rice is due to travel to Moscow later today for talks with Russian leaders, also expected to focus on the Iranian nuclear issue.

Russia has indicated reluctance to support U.S.-led moves to refer Iran to the United Nations Security Council for failing to adhere to nonproliferation obligations.


For more on Tehran's nuclear activities, see RFE/RL's webpage Iran's Nuclear Program