Iran says ready for nuclear talks if they are ‘fair’

Iran is ready to  resume long-stalled talks over its nuclear programme provided they are “fair”, Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki was quoted on Thursday as saying.

Mottaki’s remarks come as world powers on Wednesday announced in New York that they wanted an “early negotiated solution” to the standoff with the Islamic republic over its nuclear ambitions.

The United States and the four other permanent members of the UN Security Council — Britain, China, France, Russia — and Germany (P5+1) announced the new diplomatic overture on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly.

“Mottaki reiterated Iran’s readiness for negotiations with the Vienna group and the P5+1,” state television’s website reported.

“Talks can succeed provided they are fair and Iran’s right to peaceful use of nuclear energy is recognised,” he was quoted as saying in a meeting Wednesday in New York with Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi.

By the “Vienna group” Iran means the UN atomic watchdog, France, Russia and the United States discussing a swap deal with Iran that was agreed last October.