Middle East

EU-Iran nuclear talks 'useful and constructive'

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton (R) and Iran's chief negotiator Saeed Jalili (C) walk before their meeting in the garden of the Iranian Consulate in Istanbul September 18, 2012. REUTERS/Osman Orsal

BRUSSELS: The European Union says a meeting between its foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton and Iran's top nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili aimed at restarting formal talks over Tehran's nuclear program was "useful and constructive."

A brief EU statement said the meeting in Istanbul, which ended early Wednesday, was "an important opportunity to stress once again to Iran the urgent need to make progress." It did not elaborate further.

The statement says Ashton will brief representatives of the U.S. and five other world powers next week in New York about her efforts to restart negotiations that fizzled in June.

Those governments fear the failure of negotiations could prompt Israel to make good on its threat to attack Tehran's nuclear installations. Tehran denies it is making nuclear weapons.





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