Ahmadinejad Upbeat Despite Sanction Threats

Deadlocked nuke talks a 'step forward,' insists Iranian prez
By Victoria Floethe,  Newser User
Posted Jul 20, 2008 8:52 AM CDT
European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana speaks at a press conference in Geneva following deadlock talks over Iran's nuclear ambitions.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – After nuclear talks in Geneva ended in a deadlock yesterday, major powers gave Iran a two-week deadline to halt uranium enrichment or face tougher EU and UN sanctions, Reuters reports. But Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad today presented an upbeat analysis of the discussions. "Any negotiation that takes place is a step forward," the Iranian president told state media reporters.

Iran continues to maintain that its nuclear program is intended only to generate electricity. But Western powers and international organizations remain convinced that Tehran is making an atomic bomb, and patience is wearing thin. The presence of senior US envoy William Burns, the highest-level American ever to attend nuclear talks with Iran, signaled an urgent change of tactics in the Bush administration's response to Iran's nuclear ambitions.