Skip to comments.Iranian Alert - March 9, 2005 - Iran tells EU to back down on nukes
Posted on 03/09/2005 2:19:46 AM PST by DoctorZIn
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Iran tells EU to back down on nukesTEHRAN (Reuters) - Iranian officials have threatened to break off negotiations with France, Britain and Germany if the three European Union heavyweights continue to insist that Tehran abandon all sensitive atomic activities.
European officials began a new round of talks with Iranian negotiators in Geneva aimed at working out a permanent resolution to the standoff over Iran's nuclear programme, which Washington says is a front to build atomic weapons.
Tehran insists it is intended solely to generate electricity and has rejected an EU demand to terminate its uranium enrichment programme, which could be used to produce fuel for nuclear power plants or atomic weapons.
"If the Europeans refuse our proposals in the talks during the next couple of days, their proposals will be strongly opposed by Iran as well," Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi was quoted as saying by Iran's students news agency, ISNA.
Speaking on condition of anonymity, European diplomats close to the talks told Reuters no breakthroughs were expected.
In a further sign of defiance, Iran's parliament on Tuesday added a clause to next year's budget bill obliging the government to conduct feasibility studies for the construction of nuclear power plants that would generate 20 gigawatts (GW) of electricity.
The government has so far only announced plans for producing 7 GW of power from nuclear reactors by 2020. Iran's first 1 GW reactor is due to come on stream in late 2006. Despite abundant oil and gas reserves Iran says it needs atomic energy to preserve its export revenues from fossil fuels.
The official IRNA news agency said lawmakers also obliged the government "to take necessary measures to produce and supply part of the fuel" for the reactors.
COMPROMISE OR BUST
The EU says Iran must provide "objective guarantees" that it is not pursuing atomic weapons -- which they say can be nothing short of a termination of enrichment. Iran says increased inspections and limits on enrichment levels would suffice.
Sirus Naseri, a senior member of Iran's negotiating team, told Iran's state television from Geneva that without a compromise there would be no point in further negotiations.
"If ambiguities over the guarantees remain in place, continuation of the talks will be meaningless," he said.
This view was seconded by others in Tehran.
"If the Europeans demand and insist on cessation, it will mean the end of the negotiations," Ali Aghamohammadi, head of Iran's Supreme National Security Council's Propaganda Office, told state radio on Monday.
"In that case, surely we will resume our uranium enrichment activities. Also we will accelerate our activities to master the nuclear fuel cycle," he said.
On behalf of the 25-nation EU, the trio have offered Iran economic and political benefits if Tehran gives up enrichment.
In a significant shift in strategy towards arch enemy Iran, U.S President George W. Bush is leaning toward backing the EU offer of incentives, U.S. officials say.
However, he is demanding assurances from Europe that if Iran fails to cooperate, the EU will back a referral to the U.N. Security Council, which could impose sanctions.
Iran has frozen most of its enrichment programme as a voluntary confidence-building measure but has told the EU three the freeze would be short-lived. The Europeans want the suspension made permanent.
Here are a few other news items you may have missed.
- Ken Timmerman outlines why no deal is possible with Iran. Ken is also the author of a new book to be released soon, "Countdown to Crisis: the Coming Nuclear Showdown with Iran."
- The French Defense Minister writes in the Wall Street Journal," lets be partners."
- The Wall Street Journal argues that Europe's is short sided in desperately seeking filthy lucre.
- A leading secular dissident has declared himself a candidate for president of Iran, but make a few demands...
- Bush calls the war on terror a global conflict.
- Arab nations see the nomination of John Bolton as UN Ambassador as a signal of a tough US position on Iran.
- Ruel Marc Gerecht provides an overview of the Middle East situation after the events in Lebanon, with recommendations for US policy.
- Yesterday was International Woman's day. Some used the occasion to highlight the plight of imprisoned women journalists in Iran.
- Why did Russia finally agree to Iran's nuclear fuel deal. One writer says follow the $.
- And finally, The NY Times is reporting that an intelligence review has found US intelligence to be inadequate in Iran.
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The idea here is non-proliferation... if Iran persists in this demand for nuclear armament (for peaceful means) then what we need is an endless round of sanctions to make the iranian people suffer.
That will teach those mullahs.
EU Negotiators to Bloodthirsty Iranian Mullahs: IF YOU DONT COOPERATE, WE WILL HURT THE IRANIAN DEMOCRACY MOVEMENT!
I was never a fan of Britain parlaying with the mullahs anyway; I hope Blair is now satisfied that speaking to them is a waste of time. The carrot has been tried - it's now time for the Mother of All Sticks.
What can the EU do that Russia and China cannot undo?
Unless, of course, you are speaking of military force, but then again, what can the EU do?
I'm only asking because this article, basides a sideways reference to what Bush "might" think, speaks only to the EU and Iran.
Britain can send the SAS behind the enemy lines to sabotage the Iranian facilities. It's tricky and expensive to redo all that - Saddam found it tough once the Israelis took out his reactor.
EU countries have already damaged the Iranian democracy movement by trading and dealing with the Mullahs.
Their deals make the Mullahs legitimate!
I second the motion to add MOAS (mother of all sticks) into the FR lexicon. Can we now bring the issue to a vote?
Iran's freedom is near and it is gonna be from the bottom up! God Bless the Persians
"In that case, surely we will resume our uranium enrichment activities. Also we will accelerate our activities to master the nuclear fuel cycle," he said.'
Who in their right mind believes that they've stopped and aren't working at an "accelerated" pace now?
Are you insinuating that the regime may have other than peaceful reasons for wanting nuclear facilities? tsk, tsk, tsk. They're only concerned about having electricity. ;~ p
Yeah, and they are willing to go to war with the whole world to have that electricity!
This is a quote from the MUST READ article, written by Ken Timmerman, mentioned in the Doc's daily news list above. Folks, make sure you read that article!!
sshhhhhh......I don't think anyone noticed.... ;~ )
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