Source Pravda.Ru

The doors of the WTO are opened for Iran

After nine years of beating on the doors of the World Trade Organization, &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/main/2002/12/11/40695.html ' target=_blank>Iran has been allowed to begin negotiations to join the body. The deal was struck after the United States dropped its long-standing veto.

The Iranian ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva calls the decision long overdue. And, he says after nine years of fruitless efforts to gain entry, WTO member states finally have corrected a wrong.

The Swiss ambassador to the &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/diplomatic/2002/11/20/39739.html ' target=_blank>World Trade Organization, Pierre-Louis Girard, says everybody is pleased with the decision.

He says he believes the determination to admit a country into the organization should be based on trade considerations, not on political ones, informs VOA News.

According to the Forbes, at emergency talks in Geneva yesterday, the Iranians effectively made a climb-down - agreeing to hold off from breaking the deal and securing the promise of European proposals to move the negotiations forward by August.

"It was pragmatism that won the day, and not ideology," explained Hamid Reza Jalaipour, an Iranian political analyst. "All those who want the actions to be based on ideology will be the losers."

According to another diplomat, "the Iranians realised that the Europeans were not messing about".

Analysts believe Iran was unwilling to be plunged into yet another international crisis - given that it has presidential elections on June 17 and the regime is desperate to see a strong voter turnout.

"Diplomatic manoeuvring" was how Jalaipour explained Tehran`s tough stance before the negotiations.

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