said German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer. Germany, France and Britain are leading European Union efforts to
reach an agreement that would ensure Iran's nuclear-power program is peaceful. Iran has reneged on a 2003 pledge ... Bloomberg
Iran may face a "very serious" showdown with the United Nations should the Islamic country fail to dispel suspicions that it is building a nuclear-weapons program, said German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer.
Germany, France and Britain are leading European Union efforts to reach an agreement that would ensure Iran's nuclear-power program is peaceful. Iran has reneged on a 2003 pledge to suspend uranium enrichment, which the U.S. says is aimed at building a bomb.
"We should really, based on the interests of Iran and the international community, find an agreement," Fischer told reporters before a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Brussels. "If not, we are moving forward in a very serious situation."
The International Atomic Energy Agency, the UN's nuclear watchdog in Vienna, is due to discuss the matter at a Nov. 25 board of governors' meeting that might lead to a call for UN Security Council sanctions against Iran. German, French and British officials are scheduled to meet Iranian representatives on Friday in Paris.
"The talks are tough," Fischer said. "We hope there will be a successful outcome."
The EU and U.S. President George W. Bush have differed over policy toward Iran. The EU has favored more diplomatic exchanges, while the U.S., which cut off relations after its Tehran embassy staff was taken hostage in 1979, accuses the country of sponsoring terrorism.
Britain's minister for Europe, Denis MacShane, said the EU was seeking an accord that would satisfy other countries including the U.S. and Russia.
"We are working with the IAEA in Vienna to get a solution that the entire international community from Moscow to Washington is agreed on," he told reporters before the EU meeting in Brussels.