Victor Gao, the director of the China National Association of International Studies, says China welcomes news of the Iran uranium exchange plan as "a very positive step in the right direction".
He tells Al Jazeera that for China, imposing sanctions would serve to further isolate Iran and make the situation more explosive.
And while China is willing to discuss additional UN sanctions, Gao said, it has always maintained that "diplomatic efforts should be the top priority".
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