Iran’s new chief nuclear negotiator made his international debut in Rome on Tuesday, to a chorus of unusually blunt criticism by politicians in Tehran that the departure of his predecessor was unwise.
Saeed Jalili, the negotiator, met with the European Union foreign policy chief, Javier Solana, who has been asked by the United States, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany to find a formula to persuade Iran to suspend key nuclear activities.
Curiously, at Mr. Jalili’s side was Ali Larijani, his predecessor, who took the lead in the closed-door talks and in remarks afterward to reporters.
Mr. Solana described the talks as “constructive,” and Mr. Larijani called them “good.” But there was no movement on the one issue that matters, said participants in the meeting who spoke under normal diplomatic rules: Iran’s refusal to suspend uranium enrichment as required by the United Nations Security Council. [complete article]