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China urges narrowed differences in Iran talks

Updated: Feb 4,2015 7:48 PM     Xinhua

BEIJING — China on Feb 4 called on all parties involved in the Iranian nuclear talks to narrow differences and strive for a comprehensive deal at an early date.

The call came after Iran’s parliament agreed on Feb 3 to examine a bill asking the government to resume enrichment and accelerate construction of its controversial Arak heavy water reactor in case of fresh US sanctions.

Resolving the Iranian nuclear issue as soon as possible will have a far-reaching positive impact on the Middle East security situation, Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said at a daily news briefing.

Iran and the P5+1, which groups China, France, Russia, Britain, the United States and Germany, are busy negotiating a deal. “We hope all parties value and maintain the hard-won negotiation momentum,” Hong said.

China is willing to work with all sides to play a constructive role in facilitating dialogue and negotiation, he added.

Western nations suspect Iran has been developing atomic weapons under the cover of its civilian nuclear plan, while Iran dismisses the allegation, saying its nuclear program is solely peaceful and the allegation is baseless.

Under an interim deal between Iran and the P5+1 on Nov 24, 2013, Iran said it would suspend some sensitive nuclear activities in exchange for limited relief of sanctions, with all sides seeking a comprehensive deal by July 20, 2014.

But talks throughout the year failed to reach an agreement. Teheran and world powers have agreed to extend the negotiations to July this year.