China wants talks with Iran

Comments come day after China, the Security Council and Germany consider new sanctions against Iran on nuclear issue.

China PM Rongji 88  (photo credit: )
China PM Rongji 88
(photo credit: )
China said Tuesday that it was committed to a negotiated solution to the standoff over Iran's nuclear program. Beijing's comments came a day after it, the other permanent Security Council members and Germany began work in London to consider new sanctions against Iran for failing to freeze its uranium enrichment program. The six nations said they were seeking the best way to "re-engage" Tehran, but that no decisions were made and more talks were needed. "All the parties agreed to follow negotiations and peaceful means to resolve this issue," Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang told a regular news conference. "Our position has been consistent in that we advocate the solution of the Iran nuclear issue through diplomatic negotiations and peaceful means." US State Department spokesman Sean McCormack told reporters in Washington that the diplomats would hold a telephone conference Thursday "at which time they hope to be able to hammer out the elements of a UN sanctions resolution." However, sharp differences appear to remain between the tough US position and what Russia and China, veto-holding council members with close ties to Iran, are willing to accept. The senior officials from Britain, the United States, France, Germany, Russia, China and the EU Secretariat discussed the possibility of imposing incremental restrictions on trade and arms for Iran, officials said.