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Iranian Foreign Minister: WMD have no place in Iran's strategy

Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi, speaking in New York on Monday, underlined that weapons of mass destruction (WMD) have no place in Iran's defensive strategy, IRNA reported.

Speaking at the Colombia University, Kharrazi said Iran strongly believes that possessing such weapons even with the purpose of beefing up security necessities will only lead to jeopardizing such necessities.

Besides commitment to the conventional obligations, he stressed, religious and moral observations have resulted in cementing our commitment to such regulations (concerning non-proliferation of nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction).

Kharrazi stressed that any attempt by certain governments to politicize Iran's constructive interaction with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) would be 'destructive'. He added that such measures would just ruin the atmosphere of dialogue and cooperation.

Kharrazi, who is currently here to attend the 58th session of the UN General Assembly, reiterated that Tehran has no secret program regarding nuclear activities.

He said that Iran is committed to having transparent ties with the IAEA in order to continue discussions on its nuclear activities. He further referred to the wide usage of chemical, biological and nuclear technologies and equipment for peaceful purposes as well as their undeniable role in economic and social developments, and said that "Iran is determined to use its right in this effect".

"The increasing trend of using fossil fuels in Iran due to economic development, has necessitated expansion of substitute energy resources," he said.

The foreign minister also noted that western countries' participation in such projects in Iran would probably help build mutual confidence in Iran's peaceful nuclear activities.

Iran never yields to pressures, threats: Kharrazi

In another part of his speech, Kharrazi said that resorting to a language of force and threats against Iran was already doomed to failure.

He also stressed the necessity of encouraging and promoting spontaneous and local reforms in the Middle East region and criticized the US for manipulating such moves.

He noted that "reform in Iran was an irreversible trend taking its roots from domestic situation which should be encouraged and not manipulated by alien powers."

He said the US intervention would result in unfavorable outcomes including resisting the reform.

Kharrazi further emphasized the fact that any efforts to transform constructive interaction between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) into a political issue will be a non-constructive measure which will result in merely eradicating the ideal grounds for dialogue and cooperation. The foreign minister went on to underline that "weapons of mass destruction have no place in Iran's defence strategies and we strongly believe that holding such weapons will endanger our security rather than safeguarding it."

"In addition to our commitment to conventional obligations, our religious and ethical beliefs will encourage us to abide by such arrangements," he added.

On Hizbullah, Kharrazi said that "Iran's stance towards Hizbullah stands in contrast with that of America since we do not hold it as a terrorist group."

He further expressed that "Hizbullah is fighting against occupation of parts of its country by the Zionist regime and is a political party which is active within the framework of Lebanon's political structure."

... Payvand News - 9/30/03 ... --

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