Washington: US Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton called on Wednesday for Iran to make "concrete commitments"
on its nuclear program at upcoming talks with major powers --
the first in more than a year.
Hillary said that Iran`s talks expected this month with
the six powers -- Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and
the United States -- offered a chance to resolve the nuclear
row diplomatically but would not be "open-ended."
"We expect to see concrete commitments from Iran that it
will come clean on its nuclear program and live up to its
international obligations," Hillary said as she received an
award at the Virginia Military Institute.
"In the meantime we are maintaining a full-court press
against the regime, enforcing the most comprehensive package
of sanctions in history and further isolating Iran from the
international community," she said.
"This sustained pressure is bringing Iran`s leaders back
to the negotiating table, and we hope that it will result in a
plan of action that will resolve our disagreements
peacefully," she said.
President Barack Obama`s administration has warned about
the risks of military action against Iran and has intensified
economic pressure by coaxing countries not to buy Tehran`s
oil, its main moneymaker.
Israel has voiced growing impatience over Iran, which it
fears is developing a nuclear bomb. The Islamic republic says
that its controversial uranium enrichment is for peaceful
Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said last week
that the talks would open on April 13. Clinton gave the same
date and said that the venue would be Istanbul.
But Russia said yesterday that the date and venue have not
been definitively set. State Department spokeswoman Victoria
Nuland said that the United States was "awaiting Iranian
confirmation" on the talks.
The last round of talks between Iran and the so-called
P5+1 group was held in Istanbul in January 2011 and ended in
failure. Geneva hosted the round before that in late 2010.