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Khatami: Charges against Iran on intervention in Iraq baseless

Tehran, Jan 9, IRNA -- President Mohammad Khatami on Sunday termed as baseless allegations that Iran is interfering in Iraq's internal affairs.

Talking to reporters after the Majlis open-session today in which he submitted his draft budget bill for the next year, he said Iran has repeatedly stressed that it looks at security and stability in Iraq as those of its own.

He said Iran has proven for many times that it is not for insecurity and instability in Iraq.

He believed the objective behind raising such allegations against Iran was to pave the way for postponing the election in Iraq or holding it in a dim atmosphere.

He said a popular election which will bring a government representing all Iraqi people and not merely a certain tribe or family branch which would expel foreign occupiers and absorb regional and international cooperation for reconstruction of Iraq would be an appropriate answer to such hollow remarks.

Khatami said Iran was for security and stability of Iraq, holding a democratic election and establishment of an all-inclusive government there and also safeguarding its integrity while having friendly relations with it.

He expressed his hope that Iraq, which has now turned into a den which originates murders and crimes, will be a center of security and stability for the whole region in the future.

A reporter referred to president's remarks on "University Students' Day" during which he said he hears voices from among reformists which echo the same words of the enemies of the country and asked him for the reason why he refrained from naming the exact persons.

He explained that he believed putting aside the Islamic system in Iran and proposing establishment of a system other than the present one was the biggest mistake possible or even one of the plots being hatched against the country.

Khatami stressed that people should try to consolidate democracy within the structure of the present system, which is the result of a popular revolution, by relying on the Constitution.

He regretted that some were losing faith in the democratic nature of the Islamic system while some others were seeking to overthrow it and posed the question that those, who favor a revolution, whom are they to built the revolution on.

He wondered whether those who are favoring a revolution are going to built it on foreign supports or on reforms within inside.

He stressed that the Iranian nation advocated the revolution and the system but wanted to bring it closer to democratic standards.

On reasons for his introducing Ahmad Sadeq Bonab as new Minister of Roads and Transportation to the parliament, he said he has concluded on him as the best choice because he thought any other person from outside the ministry would only halt the smooth process of affairs in the remaining few months the present cabinet was in power.

Answering another question on stabilizing prices, Khatami reiterated that no one was for rising prices but he believed that no measures should be taken resulting in growing inflation and increasing the amount of cash in hands of people.

Commenting on Iran's nuclear file, he said the negotiations with Europeans has certainly reached no dead end but stressed that Iran would not forsake its major demands.

He said Iran must have its own fuel cycle in spite of the fact that Europeans were calling for more tangible guarantees.

He noted that Europeans too seemed to support appropriate solutions and voiced Iran's readiness to provide all kinds of tangible guarantees to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) while demanding for guarantees that Iran's rights too will be observed.

He told another reporter about his future after his term of presidency expires that he would go on with his activities especially in international arenas.

Referring to a conference in the US on Iran's upcoming presidential elections, he said America was no one to hold a conference on elections in Iran and even if it did so it meant interference in Iran's internal affairs.

In response to a remark by one of the reporters on misnomer of the Persian Gulf by the National Geographic Institution, the president said the naming of the Persian Gulf was a matter of history which could not be altered and expressed happiness over the fact that the institution itself has admitted its mistake.

On elections in Palestine, he said Iran never intervened in Palestine's internal affairs but believed that Israel is committing very big crimes there by sustained massacre of the Palestinian nation and suppressing them who are the true owners of the land.

Pointing out that big powers were supporting Israel, he said nobody could live in peace with the Zionist regime simply because of the fact that it does not favor peace.

However, he went on to stress, Iran was for tranquility, security and peace in Palestine while the right of the Palestinian nation to return to its own homeland and to determine its own destiny are being guaranteed.

... Payvand News - 1/9/05 ... --

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