Tehran snubbed West in nuclear talks: Iran press
AFP, Sunday 23 Jan 2011
Iran blames Western mistakes for failure of nuclear talks

Tehran snubbed the West in talks on the Islamic republic's contentious nuclear programme, Iranian media reports said on Sunday, blaming Western mistakes for the failure of the dialogue.

But most newspapers stuck to straight news reports on the two-day meeting in Istanbul which ended on Saturday, with a few offering editorial comments which took shots at the West.

"The West was passive to Iran's proposals," said a front-page headline in the state-run Iran newspaper, while the moderate Tehran Emrouz said: "Iran snubs America."

The Farsi-language hardline newspaper Kayhan echoed the Iran newspaper's view with a page-one banner that read: "Fruitless talks as Iran refuses to be blackmailed."

In an editorial, Kayhan directly blamed the West for the failure of the dialogue, saying "Iran negotiated strongly in Istanbul, but heavy mistakes in calculations in the West's mind did not allow an agreement to be reached."

Kayhan's English version said Iran entered the dialogue on an "equal footing" with the West, adding the "lifting of sanctions was the price the West has to pay" for Tehran's help in solving issues of the region.

"The West needs Iran and that explains why they are desperate to sit for talks with the Islamic republic more often. But... the West has to pay a price for Iran's cooperation and assistance" in Iraq and Afghanistan, it said.

Siyasat -e Rouz, a hardline newspaper and supporter of the elite Revolutionary Guards military force, said the West's "disappointment was expected as Tehran was not supposed to accept all their demands. "Iran will continue to press on its nuclear rights."

Several dailies also reported Iran's refusal to hold direct talks with the United States in Istanbul.

Television channels and news agencies also blamed the West for the failure of the dialogue, which they covered extensively.

During the talks, world powers failed to persuade Iran to take steps to ease suspicions over its nuclear programme as the defiant Islamic republic insisted on uranium enrichment, the most controversial part of the programme.

The meeting in Istanbul between Iran and the six world powers, Britain, China, France, Russia, the United States and Germany, ended without agreement on a new meeting.

Iran had set the stage for fierce wrangling as soon as the meeting began Friday, declaring its uranium enrichment work was not up for debate.

Speaking shortly after the end of talks, its chief negotiator Saeed Jalili insisted that Iran's right to enrich uranium "must be recognised", stressing that "we are ready for talks, even tomorrow" if the six powers were to accede to the long-standing Iranian demand.