Six major powers discuss Iran sanctions draft
Six major powers huddled behind closed doors here to review a draft UN Security Council resolution mandating sanctions against Iran over its refusal to halt sensitive nuclear fuel work.
Thursday's talks at Britain's UN mission brought together ambassadors from the UN Security Council's five veto-wielding members -- Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States -- as well as from Germany.
The focus was on the resolution crafted by Britain, France and Germany in consultations with Washington to penalise Tehran for failing to heed UN demands that it freeze its uranium enrichment activities, which the West fears could lead to Iran building a nuclear warhead.
"It was just a preliminary exchange of views," said US Ambassador John Bolton.
"We will meet again probably on Monday and I think at that point we'll have a chance to talk about specifics."
The meeting was held just as Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov rejected the proposed sanctions, arguing that they did not advance objectives agreed on earlier by the six major world powers.
"A lot of work is still to be done, a lot of work," said Russia's UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin as he emerged from the meeting at the British mission.
The draft calls on UN member states to slap nuclear and ballistic missile related sanctions on Iran.
It provides for a freeze on assets related to Iran's nuclear and missile programmes as well as travel bans on nuclear and weapons scientists involved in those programmes.