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The working meeting provided the opportunity for a mutual exchange of views and of information to take place within the context of bilateral relations. President Merz and the Iranian President Ahmadinejad in particular considered questions relating to collaboration in the energy and economic sectors. In addition the President of the Confederation mentioned the dialogue between Iran and Switzerland on human rights. In doing so, he expressed Switzerland's concern relating to human rights in Iran, in particular concerning corporal punishment, stonings and the execution of minors.
Switzerland has been representing US interests in Iran since 1980. Within the scope of this mandate undertaken by Switzerland as a protecting power, various unresolved cases of consular protection were discussed, including the sentencing of the American-Iranian journalist Roxana Saberi.
In addition the talks focussed on topics to do with international current affairs such as relations with the US and the situation in the Near East. President Merz underlined the importance of promoting dialogue and restraint in conformity with international law. In addition, he expressed the hope that the Durban World Conference against Racism would take place in a constructive atmosphere and one of mutual respect. In conclusion, both delegations discussed reforming the system of the United Nations.