Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov has underscored the need for the use of all diplomatic potential to resolve the Western dispute over Iran’s nuclear energy program.
"All possibilities for negotiations have not been used yet. It is necessary to reach an agreement and we're dealing with it," Ryabkov said on Thursday.
"Diplomacy is better than a war. Talks are better than bomb strikes," he was quoted as saying in a RIA Novosti report.
He also referred to an upcoming round of fresh negotiations between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council -- Russia, China, US, France and Britain - plus Germany (P5+1), and pointed out that the talks will likely be held in April, but the date and the place have not been fixed yet.
On March 6, Ryabkov called on the world's six major powers to resume negotiations with Iran, regarding its nuclear energy program.
"I would like to underscore Russia's interest in the Iranian side and the 'group of six' reaching agreement on a date and venue for the resumption of the negotiations process as quickly as possible," Ryabkov said.
Iran and the P5+1 held two rounds of multifaceted talks in Geneva in December 2010 and in the Turkish city of Istanbul in January 2011.
While Tehran says it is ready to continue the talks based on common grounds, it has stressed that it will not give up any of its rights.
Iran maintains that, as a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency, it has the right to develop and acquire nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.