Despite the ongoing covert war against Iran's nuclear program, the Islamic Republic's president said on Wednesday Tehran is capable of neutralizing all efforts to sabotage its nuclear facilities and repeated that Iran is ready for dialogue with the United States.
Speaking about possible sabotage of its nuclear facilities, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told reporters through an interpreter that Iran was "capable of avoiding and neutralizing these efforts."
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Iranian troops recently uncovered a spying device near the underground uranium enrichment pant at Fordo, and Iran has also claimed that Germany's Siemens planted explosives in equipment sold to Iran for use in its nuclear program. Siemens denied the allegations.
Alaeddin Boroujerdi, head of the Iranian Parliament's national security and foreign policy committee, said on Saturday that intelligence and security officials had detected explosive material inside devices supplied for Iran's nuclear activities.
'Repulsive slurs.' Anti-Iran protest in NY (Photo: Shahar Azran)
"It was planned that these devices would explode once used and damage all of our systems, but in the end with the knowledge of our experts, this enemy conspiracy was foiled," Boroujerdi was quoted as saying by ICANA, Iran's parliamentary news agency.
"The Siemens company must be held accountable for its actions," he said.
'Paranoid theories.' Anti-Iran protest (Photo: Shahar Azran)
Iran's atomic energy chief said this week that power lines to the Fordo nuclear enrichment plant were blown up on August 17 and alleged that the International Atomic Energy Agency may have been infiltrated by "terrorists and saboteurs."
Iran has previously accused Israel and Western governments of attempting to sabotage its atomic program by assassinating nuclear scientists and planting computer viruses.
Tehran says it is developing nuclear energy in order to generate electricity, and denies Western accusations it is bent on acquiring atomic bombs.
At the news conference in New York, which was held after he addressed the UN General Assembly, Ahmadinejad also said: "We are ready for a dialogue (with the United States) and a resolution of problems ... We have never had any problems with the people of the United States."
During his speech before the General Assembly, Ahmadinejad said Iran is under threat of military action from "uncivilized Zionists." While he was speaking, hundreds of people, including former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, protested near the UN building against the regime in Tehran.
The US Mission to the UN boycotted Ahmadinejad's speech. Its spokeswoman said, "Over the past couple of days, we’ve seen Mr. Ahmadinejad once again use his trip to the UN not to address the legitimate aspirations of the Iranian people but to instead spout paranoid theories and repulsive slurs against Israel. It’s particularly unfortunate that Mr. Ahmadinejad will have the platform of the UN General Assembly on Yom Kippur, which is why the United States has decided not to attend."
In his speech Ahmadinejad did not mention Syria, Iran's closest ally in the region, but the reporters asked him about the assistance provided by the Revolutionary Guards to President Bashar Assad's regime.
The commander of Iran's Revolutionary Guards, Brigadier General Mohammad Ali Jafari, said recently that "a number of Quds Force members are present in Syria and Lebanon... we provide (these countries) with counsel and advice, and transfer experience to them," Guards commander said.
Ahmadinejad told the news conference in New York that Jafari's comments were "taken out of context."