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Iran Submits Formal Response to Nuclear Proposal


Iran has submitted its formal reply to world powers on a package aimed at allaying fears over Tehran's nuclear program.

Iran's top nuclear negotiator, Ali Larijani, handed over the written response to envoys in Tehran representing the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany.

Details of the response were not immediately available, but Iranian officials say they are ready to enter negotiations over the nuclear issue.

The world powers have offered incentives in return for an end to Iran's uranium-enrichment program.

Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said Monday that his country has made its decision, and will continue along the path toward nuclear energy. He denied once again that Iran has any plans to develop nuclear weapons.

Ambassadors from Russia, China, France, Germany and Britain met with Larijani Tuesday in Tehran. Switzerland's envoy in Tehran represented the United States, which does not have diplomatic ties with Iran.

The U.N. Security Council has set an August 31st deadline for Iran to suspend its uranium-enrichment work, or face sanctions.

After Ayatollah Khamenei's comments on Monday, President Bush said he hopes the council will take quick action.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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