UN draft on Iran resolution 'ready'

The UK, China, France, Russia, US and Germany have come closer to agreeing a resolution on Iran's nuclear programme to put to the UN Security Council.

    France wants the suspension of all forms of enrichment

    Thursday's meeting of the council's permanent members plus Germany agreed to send the latest draft resolutions back to their governments.

    They were to decide on Friday whether to distribute the text to UN Security Council members.

    One source said that if there was agreement there could be a vote on the resolution next week.

    Thursday's meeting went ahead despite China's anger over a "watered-down" statement on the killing of four UN peacekeepers during an Israeli attack in Lebanon on Tuesday.

    Sanctions debate

    Wang Guangya, China's UN ambassador, had warned that the US refusal to accept criticism of Israel in a security council statement could have a "negative impact" on other council work, including the Iran resolution.

    Before the peacekeepers were killed, diplomats had reported progress in their negotiations, which have been marked by China and Russia's refusal to accept any talk of sanctions.

    Diplomats said the main elements of the draft under discussion reflect a communique adopted by foreign ministers from the six countries at a meeting in Paris on July 12.

    Jean-Marc de La Sabliere, the French ambassador to the UN, said on Tuesday: "One fundamental element of that agreement is to make the suspension of all enrichment-related activities mandatory, including research and development."



     How Britain Destroyed the Palestinian Homeland

    How Britain Destroyed the Palestinian Homeland

    Ninety-nine years since Balfour's "promise", Palestinians insist that their rights in Palestine cannot be dismissed.

    Afghan asylum seekers resort to sex work in Athens

    Afghan asylum seekers resort to sex work in Athens

    In the rundown Pedion Areos Park, older men walk slowly by young asylum seekers before agreeing on a price for sex.

    Profile: Osama bin Laden

    Profile: Osama bin Laden

    The story of a most-wanted fugitive and billionaire.