Iranian Supreme Leader Seyed Ali Khamenei on Saturday voiced dissatisfaction with the European Union (EU) on the nuclear negotiations, warning a retreat from the current stance, the official IRNA News Agency reported.
"In the negotiations with the Europeans, we are serious but the Europeans should prove that they are serious too in solving the problems, but unfortunately the case has not been so yet," Khamenei was quoted as saying.
"On the other hand, if the Iranian officials sense that the Europeans are not serious, the current process will be changed," Khamenei said, adding that the Europeans were faced with a "great, alert and cultured nation."
Khamenei urged the Europeans not to be influenced by the United States and Israel, saying Iranian officials would protect national interests in the nuclear talks relying on rationality and wisdom.
"Reason, rationality, good management and maintaining national interests are the basis of Iran's policy in all international scenes including the nuclear talks," Khamenei said.
Iran and the EU are undertaking consecutive negotiations on Iran's nuclear programs since Tehran downright suspended its sensitive uranium enrichment on November 22, 2004, under the lasting persuasion and encouragement of the European trio of Britain, France and Germany.
However, it was reported recently that the negotiations had reached a deadlock and that the EU, hardening its attitudes, had asked Iran to suspend all nuclear activities.
The United States, accusing Iran of secretly developing nuclear weapons, has threatened to launch preemptive attacks on Iran's nuclear facilities.
Iran rejects the charge and threat, saying its nuclear research is fully peaceful and boasting an effective deterrent power to confront its enemies in the region.
(Xinhua News Agency January 30, 2005)