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Europe Preparing Stiff Response To Iran

Solana says Europe will send Iran "a clear message" at the 12 January meeting (file photo) (AFP) 11 January 2006 -- Diplomats from Britain, France, and Germany today prepared their response to Iran's resumption of nuclear activities ahead of a meeting on the subject in Berlin tomorrow.

The three European powers, along with the United States and Russia, are unhappy over Iran's decision to abandon the moratorium on its nuclear activities involving uranium enrichment.

European Union foreign policy head Javier Solana said at ministerial talks in Brussels today that Europe will send a "clear signal" to Iran.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair said he may seek to have Iran brought before the UN Security Council, which could possibly lead to sanctions.

"The decision by Iran is very serious indeed,” Blair said. “I don't think there is any point in people or us hiding our deep dismay at what Iran has decided to do, and when taken in conjunction with their other comments about the state of Israel, they cause real and serious alarm right across the world."

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov today said that Iran's move "disappoints" him and also instills in him a "certain alarm."

German Deputy Foreign Minister Gernot Erler says that European negotiators cannot continue talks with Iran unless it promises not to begin enriching uranium.

Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad today said that Iran is not afraid of Western uproar and will continue its nuclear activities.

(compiled from agency reports)

RFE/RL Iran Report

RFE/RL Iran Report

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