US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice
Photo: AP

Iran becoming increasingly dangerous, says Rice

US secretary of state says US committed to diplomatic solution to Iranian nuclear problem, but does not rule out military solution

Iran has become "increasingly dangerous" US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said in an interview with Maria Bartiromo on CNBC's "Closing Bell" program on Friday.


"This (Iran) is a very dangerous state with very dangerous policies and we need the help and support and intensify efforts of the international community to deal with Iran," Rice said, while refusing to rule out a military solution to the Islamic Republic's nuclear program.


In the interview, Rice said US President George W. Bush was still committed to "diplomatic solutions to the Iranian problem", but that Iran must know "there are coercive elements to our policy as well."


"The president's never going to take his options off the table and frankly no one should want the American president to take his options off the table," she said.


Iran, branded by the US as one of the "state sponsors of terrorism," has been under UN sanctions for its refusal to suspend uranium enrichment, which produces nuclear reactor fuel but can also be used as material for an atom bomb.


Shortly after the interview, the US State Department announced that Rice is scheduled to visit the Middle East this month in a fresh push for peace, hoping to build on momentum created by the appointment of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair as a special envoy for the region.


Rice is scheduled to visit Israel and the West Bank during the July 16-20 trip and will meet with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in Jerusalem and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah.


פרסום ראשון: 07.07.07, 11:11
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