Tue May 22, 2012 3:7PM
The upcoming talks between Iran and the six world powers over Tehran’s nuclear energy program serves as a litmus test for the West to show a sign of good faith to the Iranian side, a political analyst tells Press TV. “Now is time for the West to take the first moves. So I think that in Baghdad, the Iranians will be waiting to see if the West is serious about resolving the issue or not,” said Mohammad Marandi, professor at the University of Tehran, in a Monday interview. The political commentator argued, “In the past, the Iranians have made many initial steps. They halted enrichment for two years, they applied additional protocol for a couple of years, and they signed the Tehran declaration, which the West basically refused.” On May 17, 2010, foreign ministers of Iran, Turkey, and Brazil signed a declaration in Tehran for swapping Iran's low-enriched uranium in exchange for 20-percent enriched nuclear fuel rods on Turkish soil. However, the US and its European allies snubbed the trio's agreement which was issued as part of efforts to end the nuclear standoff between Iran and the West. Marandi argued that the US “is trying to create a situation where there would be a never-ending process so that the Americans will have always the capability to put pressure on Iran.” If the West expects extra steps from Tehran -- such as allowing further access to the Iranian nuclear sites -- they need to follow up their expectations “within the framework of a comprehensive solution,” the analyst added. The remarks come on the heels of the next round of talks between Iran and the P5+1 - the US, Britain, Russia, China, and France plus Germany - slated to be held in the Iraqi capital city, Baghdad, on May 23. The latest round of talks between Iran and the P5+1 group was held in the Turkish city of Istanbul on April 14. Both sides hailed the discussions as constructive. The US, Israel and some of their allies accuse Tehran of pursuing military objectives in its nuclear energy program. Iran has repeatedly dismissed the Western allegations over its nuclear activities, arguing that as a committed signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and an IAEA member, it has the right to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes. ASH/PKH/IS