Reuters:Iran has formally withdrawn its demand to exempt sensitive research from a freeze of key parts of its nuclear programme -- a last-minute bid to remove the threat of U.N. economic sanctions, Western diplomats say.
AFP: Iran backed down Sunday on a demand to exempt sensitive equipment from a freeze on uranium enrichment that can make atomic weapons, setting the stage for the UN nuclear watchdog to endorse the freeze as a confidence-building measure.
Press Association: The 300 men filling out forms in the offices of an Iranian aid group were offered three choices: train for suicide attacks against US troops in Iraq, or train for suicide attacks against Israelis. Or train to assassinate British author Salman Rushdie.
AFP: Canada's newly-appointed ambassador to Iran will get into "trouble" if he pursues the case of murdered Iranian-Canadian photographer Zahra Kazemi, Iran's foreign ministry warned Sunday. "If anyone enters Iran on this mission they get themselves into trouble. This is a domestic issue of the Islamic Republic of Iran," foreign ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told reporters.
AP: Iran toughened its position over its nuclear program Sunday, vowing to maintain its demand to exempt 20 centrifuges it says it wants for research despite international efforts to save a deal committing Tehran to freeze uranium enrichment and all related activities. Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi also said Tehran was not worried about being referred to the U.N. Security Council for possible sanctions.
New York Times: Iran's foreign minister said Saturday that Iran had every right to keep, for research purposes, some centrifuges that could be used to enrich uranium, an indication that a standoff on the country's nuclear program may not be easily resolved. "Iran's demand to keep 20 centrifuges is not against its commitments," said the minister, Kamal Kharrazi, the IRNA news agency reported.
New York Times: When Friday Prayer here finishes at about two o'clock in the afternoon, hundreds of worshipers parade toward waiting buses east of Tehran University, shouting canned rhetoric against America and Israel, defining themselves by their animosity toward others. Watching this ritual, one cannot help but ask a soul-searching question: "How can such a small minority of vocal people - totally orchestrated worshipers and their security guards - set the agenda for a nation of 70 million people?"
Reuters: France, Britain and Germany told Iran on Saturday if they had not reached a final agreement to freeze key parts of its atomic program by Monday, they would not stop moves to seek sanctions against Tehran, diplomats said. "The Iranians were told that if there's no deal by Monday, they (the EU) would no longer block a referral to the U.N. Security Council when the (U.N. nuclear watchdog) reconvenes," a Western diplomat told Reuters.
Reuters: Iran is working on a secret nuclear programme for military purposes despite promising the European Union it would halt all activities related to uranium enrichment, the news magazine Der Spiegel said on Saturday.
AFP: Informal Iran-EU talks to rescue an agreement on a promised Iranian freeze of key nuclear fuel-making activities broke off Saturday, opening the door to possible UN sanctions against Tehran, diplomats said. "We have no progress. It is up to the Iranians now to ponder what they will do," a European diplomat close to the talks told AFP. "They have a very serious decision to make.".
AFP: A top US commander has warned Iran and other countries to never underestimate US air and naval power, discounting concerns that US forces are too tied down in Iraq to respond to challenges elsewhere.
Associated Press: A top Iraqi official has been briefing Iranian officials on his country's ongoing problems with militants and demanding help from Tehran in curbing the infiltration of terrorists over the border into Iraq.
CNN: Iran's Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi said the new draft resolution put forward by three European powers at a key meeting of the U.N. nuclear watchdog is still unacceptable despite recent changes, Iran's state-run news agency reported Saturday.
AFP: The standoff between Iran and the international community over its nuclear programme is headed towards "normalisation", a top cleric said on Friday, despite a row over whether Tehran has fully suspend uranium enrichment. "It is excluded that the issue will come before the UN Security Council. The affair is heading towards normalisation," Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati said in a Friday sermon in Tehran.
New York Times: Iran and its European partners struggled Friday to salvage their agreement committing Tehran to freeze an important part of its nuclear program, European and Iranian officials said. But the two sides were so far apart that their talks were put off until Monday.