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U.S., Iran Differ on Nuclear Talks as Deadline Passes

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U.S., Iran Differ on Nuclear Talks as Deadline Passes

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U.S., Iran Differ on Nuclear Talks as Deadline Passes

U.S., Iran Differ on Nuclear Talks as Deadline Passes

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/7532234/7532235" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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A pending report from the United Nations' nuclear agency is likely to confirm that Iran is speeding up the construction of an industrial-scale uranium enrichment facility.

That deadline for Iran to suspend its enrichment program passed today; it was set last December, when the Security Council imposed sanctions on Iran.

Iranian leaders insist they will not suspend enrichment under pressure. That could mean even tougher sanctions.

Iran's president has said repeatedly that negotiations are possible — but with no preconditions.

The United States is trying to send every possible signal that it wants to use diplomacy and not resort to any military action against Iran, says Nicholas Burns, Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs.

But the United States still insists that Iran suspend uranium enrichment as a precondition to direct negotiations.

Robert Siegel talks with Burns, one of the Bush administration's chief negotiators.