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    Paris set to host latest meeting over Iran nuclear crisis

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    Negotiators from six countries will meet in Paris Tuesday in a bid to forge a common approach toward diffusing the crisis over Iran's controversial nuclear programs, the French Foreign Ministry said.

    PARIS, May 2 (RIA Novosti, Andrei Nizamutdinov) - Negotiators from six countries will meet in Paris Tuesday in a bid to forge a common approach toward diffusing the crisis over Iran's controversial nuclear programs, the French Foreign Ministry said.

    Deputy foreign ministers of the trio of European Union nations tackling the issue - the United Kingdom, Germany and France - Russia, China and the United States will consider a report on Iran's nuclear developments that the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the UN nuclear watchdog, delivered to the UN Security Council Friday.

    Mohamed ElBaradei's report confirmed that Iran had failed to meet the UN Security Council's April 28 deadline to halt all uranium enrichment activities, which opened the way for the Council to take punitive actions against the Islamic Republic.

    Although the negotiators are categorically against Iran's developing nuclear weapons, they remain divided over what the next steps should be.

    The United States has been pushing sanctions against Tehran, and has refused to rule out a military operation, but Russia and China have consistently favored a diplomatic solution.

    Diplomats in Paris said that France took the position that the UN Security Council must pass a resolution that would make sanctions possible but rule out the use of force. They also said the Council could also set a new deadline for Iran to comply with its demands.

    In a resolution March 28, the UN Security Council demanded Iran end uranium enrichment and re-open its nuclear facilities for UN inspections. It also ordered ElBaradei to look into Tehran's compliance with its non-proliferation commitments.

    In defiance of the demands, Tehran, which insists on its right to pursue peaceful nuclear programs, announced April 11 that it had successfully produced low-enriched uranium. ElBaradei confirmed this in his report Friday.

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