Page last updated at 11:24 GMT, Wednesday, 15 April 2009 12:24 UK

Iran 'to propose nuclear package'

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, pictured on 9 April 2009
The Iranian leader said his proposals would be revealed soon

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says Iran has prepared proposals aimed at resolving his country's nuclear dispute with the West.

Speaking in southern Iran, Mr Ahmadinejad said that the package would ensure "peace and justice" for the world.

It would be offered to the West soon, he said, but gave no further details.

Iran says its nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes, but has been accused of seeking nuclear weapons by critics.

Tehran has continued to enrich uranium despite lengthy negotiations in recent years with major powers and despite the imposition of sanctions by the UN Security Council.

Last month US President Barack Obama used a video message to offer "a new beginning" to Iran, triggering some conciliatory signs from Tehran, correspondents say.

Earlier this week it appeared to welcome an offer of talks from the US, Russia, China, France, UK and Germany on its nuclear programme.

'Respects rights'

Mr Ahmadinejad's speech was carried live on television, as he visited Kerman in the south of Iran.

"We have prepared a package that can be the basis to resolve Iran's nuclear problem. It will be offered to the West soon," he said.

"This new package will ensure peace and justice for the world. It respects rights of all nations," he said.

The BBC's John Leyne in Tehran says this might sound like a peace initiative in Iran, responding to the recent overtures from Mr Obama, but it is unlikely to be seen that way in Western capitals.

It is more a case of Iran trying to take the diplomatic initiative in this long-running dispute.

Iran has already made it clear it is not prepared to compromise on its nuclear programme, or bow to Western demands.

So it looks as if Iran is likely to offer a repeat of proposals it put forward last year, our correspondent says.

At that time, Iran's ideas were not taken seriously by Western negotiators, as all Iran seemed to be offering was endless talks, while it continued its nuclear programme unhindered.

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