Tuesday, April 25, 2006

BREITBART.COM - Iran Ready to Transfer Nuclear Know-How

BREITBART.COM - Iran Ready to Transfer Nuclear Know-How:

"Iran Ready to Transfer Nuclear Know-How

Associated Press Writer


Iran's supreme leader said Tuesday that the country is ready to transfer its nuclear technology to other countries. Meanwhile, Tehran threatened to halt all cooperation with the U.N. atomic energy agency if the U.N. Security Council imposes sanctions, warning that it might hide its nuclear program if the West takes any other 'harsh measures.'

Iran's warning to the U.N. watchdog agency, the International Atomic Energy Agency, came from Tehran's top nuclear negotiator, Ali Larijani. They were the strongest words of defiance yet ahead of a Friday deadline, set by the Security Council, for Iran to suspend enrichment of uranium, a process that can produce fuel for nuclear reactors or material for warheads.

'Military action against Iran will not end our program,' Larijani said at a conference on the energy program. 'If you take harsh measures, we will hide this program. If you use the language of force, you should not expect us to act transparently.'

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice immediately shot back, saying Iran's statements were further isolating it from the international community.

'Iranians can threaten, but they are deepening their own isolation,' she said in Athens."


China and Russia, which are permanent, veto-wielding members of the council, oppose sanctions and both called Tuesday for more negotiations.

"We see no alternative to the negotiations process," Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov was quoted as saying by the Interfax news agency while in Beijing for a regional anti-terrorism meeting.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang urged all parties "to show flexibility," saying the international community should not abandon efforts for a peaceful settlement.

Tuesday's comments were not the first time Iran has threatened to curb cooperation. Several months ago, Tehran announced it would not honor the IAEA's so-called "additional protocol," which gave the agency increased and more thorough inspection powers.

But Larijani said this time that Iran would suspend its cooperation altogether if sanctions were imposed.

"How are you going to prevent our nuclear activities by imposing sanctions? If U.N. Security Council sanctions are to be imposed on Iran, we will definitely suspend our cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency," Larijani said. He added that Western countries on the IAEA board "have to understand they cannot resolve this issue through force."

He also hinted that sanctions or even what he called coercive language from the Security Council would cause Iran to speed up its nuclear activities.

"You can't set a framework through coercion. If you try to do it by force, our response will be to break such a framework," he said.

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