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Iran: Rafsanjani says path clear for real nuclear talks

TEHRAN, June 23 (Mehr News Agency) -- It appears that the way is paved for holding real nuclear negotiations, Expediency Council Chairman Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani said in a sermon at Friday prayers in Tehran.

However, it also seems that some elements are intentionally trying to undermine this peaceful process, he noted, adding, "Nevertheless, we believe that this is the correct way, and the problem should be solved through negotiation and confidence building."

Iran's nuclear dossier is a critical matter and the whole world, and not just Iran, is worried about it, he added.

20-Year Outlook Plan can serve as model for Third World

Rafsanjani said that the most important aspect of Iran's 20-Year Outlook Plan is the fact that it was drafted based on the social needs and historical background of Iran.

The second key aspect of the plan is its reliance on domestic facilities, that is to say, all of the outlined objectives in the plan can be realized with the country's current facilities, he pointed out.

He said the plan is comprehensive and progressive and underlines the necessity of improving the current situation in the country.

The 20-year Outlook Plan takes all predictable and unpredictable threats into account, and therefore is a suitable model for Third World countries because it is realistic, he observed.

Special attention is paid to national unity in the plan, and this national cohesion can play a crucial role in guaranteeing the realization of the outlined objectives, he explained.

Since the plan has been compiled in line with Islamic guidelines and through public participation, it can serve as a perfect model for the Third World, and particularly for Islamic countries, he opined.

Drug problem is real disaster of modern world

Elsewhere in his remarks, Rafsanjani said the drug problem is the real disaster of the modern world, adding that the danger of synthetic drugs is much greater than the danger of organic drugs, and this is what threatens the world.

U.S. officials have often cited the need to eradicate poppy cultivation as one of the reasons for the U.S. occupation of Afghanistan, although illicit drug production has risen sharply since foreign forces arrived and drug smuggling gangs are becoming involved in the political process, he stated.

Rafsanjani went on to say that most of the leaders of the major drug cartels are backed by colonialist countries.

The United States used chemical defoliants to destroy Vietnam's jungles but now says that it cannot locate poppy farms in Afghanistan, he added.

Commenting on the situation in Iraq, the EC chairman said the establishment of the country's permanent government has opened the way for the reconstruction of Iraq and Iran will spare no effort in helping its neighbor.

... Payvand News - 6/24/06 ... --

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