Iran's Jalili says Istanbul nuclear talks 'long and useful'

Iran's top nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili said on Thursday that nuclear talks with the EU'S foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton were "long and useful" and that both sides have decided to continue the discussions.

"Last night, as Lady Ashton said, we had long, useful talks," Jalili said in Istanbul. "We had the chance to go into details. We decided to continue working and keep on our talks."

Ashton called the talks "useful" in a statement on Wednesday and said it was time to "reflect on how to go to the next stage of the process".

The top negotiators were meeting for the first time since fruitless six-party negotiations in April over Iran's controversial nuclear ambitions.

Jalili said Iran was "ready to continue the talks any time" but said Tehran's right to peaceful uranium enrichment "should be recognised".