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Iran 'will never compromise rights' in nuclear programme

11 november 2011, 12:15
0
Iran's IAEA ambassador Ali Asghar Soltanieh. ©Reuters
Iran's IAEA ambassador Ali Asghar Soltanieh. ©Reuters
Iran's envoy to the IAEA said Wednesday his country "will never compromise its legitimate rights" in pursuing its atomic programme, despite a report strongly suggesting Tehran was engaged in nuclear weapons development, AFP reports.

"As a responsible state, the Islamic republic of Iran will never compromise its legitimate rights and will continue to comply with its commitments under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty," Ali Asghar Soltanieh said, as cited by the official IRNA news agency.

"Iran will continue its peaceful nuclear activities. And, just as many other previous claims were proven baseless, this time also they will not bear any results," he said.

Soltanieh stressed that Iran's nuclear programme was entirely peaceful and that Iran would continue to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency, the UN's nuclear watchdog.

His comments came a day after the IAEA released its report saying "credible" evidence existed to suggest Iran had done work towards building nuclear warheads.

Soltanieh, who late Tuesday dismissed the report as "politically motivated", on Wednesday accused IAEA chief Yukiya Amano of making a "historic mistake" in releasing the document.

Amano had displayed "unbalanced, unprofessional and political" behaviour in publishing the report, which contained "false claims" based on information from Iran's arch-foe the United States and other countries, Soltanieh said.

The United States used the report's release to say it would seek to ratchet up pressure on Iran, which is already subject to international sanctions over its nuclear programme.

The IAEA said in its report it had "serious concerns" over information that Iran "has carried out activities relevant to the development of a nuclear explosive device."

Although it stopped short of bluntly accusing Iran of trying to make nuclear weapons, it said it appeared activities had been carried out that included computer modelling of a nuclear warhead, explosives tests, and studying how to arm a medium-range missile with an atomic warhead.

Iran has always maintained that its nuclear programme is for exclusively civilian uses, not military ones.

Its two allies on the UN Security Council, Russia and China, are seen by experts as likely to block any attempt by the IAEA to report Iran to the council in an effort to broaden sanctions.

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