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Creative diplomacy needed to break Iran impasse, says UK daily

London, Sept 29, IRNA-A leading British daily called Thursday for "creative diplomacy" to break the impasse over Iran's nuclear program. "It was comforting to hear from (Foreign Secretary) Jack Straw yesterday that military action against Iran is not "on the agenda" of Britain or the US, and that war is "inconceivable," the Guardian said.

But it also believed that Straw's reassurance was "still not as unequivocal as some would have wanted, and did not address the "all options are on the table" position President George Bush uses." "Nuances matter because the crisis over Iran's nuclear ambitions is potentially extremely serious - and is escalating," the paper warned in its editorial.

The issue at stake is Iran's insistence that as a signatory to the nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT) it is legally entitled to civilian nuclear technology as opposed to `circumstantial evidence' alleging the technology may be used for a military capability.

The Guardian said that "European diplomacy was galvanized" by the need to avoid the sort of divisions that fatally paralyzed the EU over Iraq, but that it hit a wall over Tehran's refusal to refrain from uranium reprocessing.

It believed it was "hardly surprising" Iran was angered by the recent majority IAEA vote that claimed the country was in 'non- compliance." It was "ironically, one of those (who voted) was India, which (like Pakistan and Israel) is not a signatory to the NPT but has its own (US-tolerated) nuclear weapons," the daily said.

It argued that the debate about Iran "cannot be divorced from the appalling situation in Iraq," where the case for military action "rested on the search for WMD which turned out to be non-existent." "It is understandable that there is skepticism about claims that they are again at the heart of a crisis where the pace is being set by the US," the Guardian said.

It welcomed Straw saying that the door remains open for diplomacy, but warned that the "diplomacy needs to be more creative in finding ways out of the Iranian impasse ahead."

... Payvand News - 9/29/05 ... --

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