President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says Iran won't retreat "an iota" from its nuclear program but is strongly rejecting a UN report claiming that Tehran is seeking atomic weapons.
Ahmadinejad chided the UN International Atomic Energy Agency, saying it is discrediting itself by siding with "invalid" US claims that Iran is seeking to develop nuclear weapons.
- China urges peaceful resolution to nuclear issue
"You should know that this nation will not pull back even a needle's width from the path it is on," he said in a speech carried live on state television.
Nuclear reactor in Isfahan (Photo: AFP)
"Why do you damage the agency's dignity because of America's invalid claims?" he said, apparently addressing members of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) which published its report on Tuesday.
Ahmadinejad made the comments on Wednesday in a speech addressing thousands of people in central Iran.
Also Wednesday, the deputy chief of Iran's armed forces warned that any attack by Israel would bring "destruction" of the Jewish state and that Iran's retaliation would be felt outside the Middle East as well.
Brigadier General Masoud Jazayeri stressed that the Dimona reactor in Israel was "the most accessible" target, and that "our response would not be limited to the Middle East," according to an interview given to the Iranian Arabic-language channel Al-Alam.
Earlier, France's foreign minister Allain Juppe said his country is ready to push for sanctions of "an unprecedented scale" if Iran refuses to answer new questions about its nuclear program.
Juppe said that if Iran fails to answer concerns raised by this report, the international community should raise diplomatic pressure to a new level, focusing on expanded sanctions.
- Follow Ynetnews on Facebook
- Receive Ynetnews updates
directly to your desktop