Photo: Reuters
Iranian president Ahmadinejad addressing the United Nations
Photo: Reuters

Iran warns U.N.

Foreign minister warns nuclear watchdog not to refer case to Security Council after European representatives say 'no choice' but to pursue sanctions over nuclear issue following President Ahmadinejad's fiery speech to U.N. Saturday; Ahmadinejad: 'Those who armed the Zionist occupation are trying to prevent others from being armed with peaceful technology'

Iran on Sunday warned the board of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) against sending its atomic case to the U.N. Security Council, hinting such a move could prompt Tehran to start uranium enrichment.


"Our advice to the agency is to review Iran's case tomorrow logically and realistically to avoid making the case more complicated," Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told a weekly news conference.


"We haven't started (uranium) enrichment yet but everything depends on the result of tomorrow's meeting," he said.


Uranium enrichment is the most sensitive part of the nuclear fuel cycle and can be used to make either atomic reactor fuel or bomb-grade material.


Harsh words, harsh reaction


Asefi was responding to threats made by several European diplomats reacted to refer Iran to the Security Council following Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's fiery speech to the U.N. General Assembly Saturday.


"What I heard today makes me say the option of referral ... to the UN Security Council remains on the agenda," French Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy told reporters after the speech.


Inalieable rights


In a highly anticipated address as part of the world body's 60th anniversary celebration, Ahmadinejad said his country had "the inalienable right to produce nuclear fuel" and used the occasion to attack Israel and accuse the United States of violating global nuclear treaties.


"Those who armed the Zionist occupation are trying to prevent other countries from being armed with peaceful technology. There are a few sides who are using threats, and their power to abuse others – with the help of their control of the press," said Ahmadinejad.


"The United States violated the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. Saddam's regime used chemical weapons against Iran. Who armed him with these weapons?"


Liberating Palestine


Returning to his verbal attack on Israel, Ahmadinejad said, "When the people of Palestine resist the occupation they are accused of terror, while the oppressors are supported, the ones claiming that they are fighting terror.


The land of Palestine should be liberated and a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital should be established," said the Iranian president.


Ahmadinejad also called for a U.N. committee to investigate how nuclear means were obtained by the "Zionist regime."


"Bad Intentions"


Earlier, the Iranian president told CNN that "the United States has bad intentions towards Iran," and said he would defend his country's "right" to enrich uranium, and called for the creation of a special U.N. committee to limit the spread of atomic weaponry.


He added that Iran planned to "guard its rights."


Asked whether Iran would use the oil weapon as a political tool in the nuclear dispute, Ahmadinejad said, "I think any intelligent, healthy, smart human being should use every resource in order to maintain his or her freedom and independence."


There had been some speculation that the Iranian president would suggest new ways to solve the nuclear crisis with the United States and European Union.


U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice said that if diplomatic attempts fail, the Security Council would deal with the crisis.


Yizhak Benhorin contributed to this report


פרסום ראשון: 09.17.05, 23:57
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