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Hopes for progress high as US, partners meet with Iran this week over its nuclear program

GENEVA – Iran’s overtures to the West are being tested as the U.S. and its partners sit down for the first talks on Tehran’s nuclear program since the election of a reformist Iranian president.

Negotiations between Iran and the U.S., Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany began Tuesday morning at the main United Nations building in Geneva.

The six want to test Tehran’s new style since the June election of President Hassan Rouhani but insist that it will take more than words to advance negotiations and end crippling international sanctions.

Iran has long insisted it does not want nuclear weapons and that its nuclear program is entirely peaceful. But Iranian officials from Rouhani down say their country is ready to meet some international demands to reduce its nuclear activities and build trust.