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Iranian-British academics condemn UN referral threat

London, Feb 2, IRNA-Iranian-British academics Thursday joined anti-war campaigners in condemning plans led by the US and UK to report Iran's nuclear file to the UN Security Council.

"This is a step towards an international crisis which can lead the US to embark on another doomed military `solution'," the academics from universities across the UK warned.

"Let us not forget the misrepresentations of intelligence on Iraq. Those who lied so patently and with no remorse about Iraq are now similarly accusing Iran," they said in a letter published in the Guardian newspaper.

The warning, which was also supported by former British Energy Secretary Tony Benn and anti-war Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn, came as board members of the IAEA begin an emergency session in Vienna to discuss a UK-drafted resolution to report Iran's file.

The British-Iranian academics included Professor Haleh Ashar of York University, Abbas Edalat of London's Imperial College, Ziba Mir-Hosseini of the London Middle East Institute and Reza Sheikholeslami of Oxford University.

Other signatories included Gholam Khiabany of London Metropitan University and Elahah Rostami-Povey of the School of Oriental and African Studies as well as former UN humanitarian coordinator for Iraq Hans von Sponeck, the CND peace group and Stop the War Coalition.

"The Bush administration has always warned that military intervention is an option, and (Prime Minister) Tony Blair has not ruled it out," the joint letter said.

"Israel also (the only nuclear country in the region) threatens to take military action against Iran," it warned.

The academics warned that in light of the continuing political and humanitarian crises in Iraq and Afghanistan, sanctions and military intervention against Iran would be "disastrous for the people of Iran and of the Middle East."

"All matters related to Iran's nuclear program must be solved by peaceful means through negotiation," they said.

... Payvand News - 2/2/06 ... --

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