Iran would consider any new ideas on a proposed nuclear fuel swap with major powers, Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said on Tuesday, after meeting his Turkish counterpart in Tehran.
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, who arrived late on Monday to try to salvage a U.N.-brokered uranium swap deal as calls grow for new sanctions against Iran, was expected to meet President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad later on Tuesday.
Turkey has offered to use its access to the Iranian leadership to help solve a dispute between global powers and Tehran over its nuclear programme.
Mottaki described the talks with Davutoglu as consultations, rather than any mediation between Tehran and the world powers.
"We have informed our Turkish friends about the latest developments on Iran's peaceful nuclear case," Mottaki told a joint news conference with Davutoglu.
Mottaki, echoing comments by Iran's nuclear agency chief on Monday, said the United States, France and Russia had submitted a new letter to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
The letter contained a new proposal, Mottaki said. "While we are continuing our (nuclear) activities we will consider any new idea or proposal, either given directly or indirectly via the agency (IAEA)," he said, giving no details.
The United States denied on Monday that it had made new proposals along with France and Russia on the nuclear fuel swap, and said "the door remains open" for Tehran to accept the proposal offered in October.
Iran wants any such swap, under which Iran would receive higher-grade fuel for a medical reactor, to be simultaneous.
Turkey has offered itself as a third country where the uranium could be exchanged.
Turkish foreign minister said that Tehran's nuclear program had come up during the meeting.
"We have taken up with my friend and brother with utmost sincerity Iran's nuclear program, which has been a regular topic of our frequent contacts," Davutoglu said.
The Turkish foreign minister did not elaborate on details of his talks with Motaki over the nuclear issue. "[Mr. Motaki] has informed me on latest developments and I conveyed our view to him," Davutoglu said.
Davutoglu said Iran's positive contributions were needed to "achieve a region of prosperity and stability through political dialogue, diplomacy and economic cooperation."
Davutoglu also said the the two countries had set a target to increase the trade volume up to as high as 30 billion USD annually.
Motaki said on his part that relations between Iran and Turkey had been improving in all areas, adding that Turkish President Abdullah Gul and Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan had laid the foundations of "a new and an important era" in bilateral ties.
"Turkey and Iran are two important countries of an important region. And their cooperation is important in solving issues of the region as well as maintaining peace and security," Motaki said.
This is fourth time in the last five months that Davutoglu has visited the Iranian capital amid a growing row between Iran and the Western powers over Tehran's nuclear program.
Turkey's FM meets Mottaki on nuclear talks
Iran would consider any new ideas on a proposed nuclear fuel swap with major powers, Mottaki said.