PARIS – French President Jacques Chirac suggested Monday that the international community renounce referring Iran to the U.N. Security Council during nuclear talks — and that Iran, in return, suspend uranium enrichment.
"I don't believe in a solution without dialogue," Chirac said on Europe-1 radio, suggesting that the international community suspend the threat of U.N. sanctions in exchange for Iran's suspension of enrichment during negotiations.
"I am not pessimistic," Chirac said. "I think that Iran is a great nation and that we can find solutions through dialogue."
He suggested that both sides set an agenda for talks — and that both make a concession during the negotiations. He said the six nations currently involved in the Iran issue — France, Germany, Britain, Russia, China and the United States first set an agenda for talks with Iran.
"We must, on the one hand, together, Iran and the six countries, meet and set an agenda for negotiations then start negotiations. Then, during these negotiations I suggest that the six renounce seizing the U.N. Security Council and Iran renounces uranium enrichment during negotiations, " Chirac said.
He spoke before heading to New York for the U.N. General Assembly. It was not immediately clear whether he would meet with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad during his stay.