Thursday, March 16, 2006

Straw: Haggling with Iran Toughest Test in Diplomacy

Negotiating with Iran over its nuclear programme is the toughest test in diplomacy, Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said. Likening discussions with Tehran to bargaining in a bazaar, Straw said negotiators were never certain what deal they had reached. "You agree with them about buying a table and when the table is delivered you find out that it has no legs and that you have to pay extra for the legs," he was quoted on Thursday as telling the Austrian daily newspaper Die Presse. READ MORE

"Whatever. That's Iran. And we will continue to negotiate with them," he said.

The United States and Britain have led international pressure on Iran to halt its suspected nuclear weapons programme. Straw said military action against Tehran was not on the agenda but that sanctions to curb its nuclear ambitions were possible.