Iran's top nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani has resigned,
government spokesman Gholam Hossein Elham said on Saturday.
"Mr. Larijani has brought forward his resignation for several
times and the president now accepted it," Elham told reporters at
his weekly press conference.
"Saeed Jalili will take his place," he added.
Jalili is currently Iran's deputy foreign minister for European
and American affairs. According to Elham, he will replace Larijani
to meet European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana in Rome
Larijani was appointed as the chief of Iran's Supreme National
Security Council in August, 2005, following President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad took his office.
He was believed to be close to Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah
Ali Khamenei and considered as an uncompromising official on
negotiations with the West over Tehran's disputed nuclear
Iran has been under the accusations from the US and other
Western nations, which believed that Tehran is developing a nuclear
weapon program under the guise of a civilian-use program.
Iran has insisted that its nuclear program is for peaceful
purposes and voiced hope for talks to defuse the nuclear
(Xinhua News Agency October 21, 2007)