US to consult allies before commenting on Iran nuclear response
The US said Saturday that it would talk with allies before commenting on Tehran's response to a plan from six world powers offering Iran technology and negotiations if it suspends uranium enrichment.
"We're going out to consult with our allies about what Iran's response means," White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said aboard Air Force One, carrying President George W Bush to the G8 Summit in Japan.
She said the US was already consulting the "P5+1" group -- the five permanent members of the UN security council plus Germany -- on how to respond to Tehran.
"We'll just have to see how that is received by others before we make a formal response," Perino said.
Iran on Friday delivered its response to the package of incentives for it to halt the enrichment of uranium, which the west fears is aimed at producing nuclear weapons but which Tehran insists is peacefully-oriented.
Iran's top nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili has said his country submitted a "constructive and creative" response with "a focus on common ground," but he did not elaborate on the contents.
On Saturday however Tehran offered to negotiate on its nuclear drive but without giving up uranium enrichment.
"Iran will not go back on its rights on the nuclear issue," government spokesman Gholamhossein Elham said.
"Iran insists on negotiations (with world powers) while respecting its rights and avoiding any loss of international rights," he said, referring to Tehran's refusal to give up on nuclear enrichment.