May 31, 2006

Rice’s offer of Iran talks “propaganda”: IRNA

TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran's official news agency IRNA said on
Thursday that an offer by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza
Rice to join European nations in talks with Iran if it suspends
uranium enrichment was a "propaganda move."

The comments were carried at the end of an IRNA despatch
datelined Berlin reporting on European reaction to Rice. IRNA
did not cite a source for the reaction and it was not
immediately clear if this was Iran's official response.

"Considering the insistence by officials of the Islamic
Republic of Iran on continuing uranium enrichment, these
remarks made by Rice can only be considered a propaganda move,"
the IRNA report said.

Iranian government officials, who have insisted in the past
that Iran would not give up enrichment, had said late on
Wednesday they had no immediate comment on the U.S. offer,
which was a major policy shift by Washington.

IRNA added: "Obviously Iran will only accept those
proposals and those conditions that preserve the nation's and
the country's interests and definitely abandoning enrichment
will not fulfil Iran's interests."