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Iran: Larijani says no need to talk to US, nuclear program transparent

Tehran, May 2, IRNA-Secretary of Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) said here Monday that Iran dose not need to talk to the US. Iran did not ask for talks with the US, on the contrary it was they who insisted on meeting with Iran on Iraq which did not happen, Ali Larijani said.

Larijani who was speaking at a student gathering in Tehran University responded to a question on what he meant by Iran-US not having talks saying "so far, these discussions have not taken place." On the likelihood of Iran dropping out of the Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT), he said "we are not going to leave the NPT unless we are forced to do so."

On the West's assertions that they have problems in dealing with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's government, he added "they said the same thing with the Khatami's government."

"The real issue is that they do not want Iran to possess peaceful nuclear technology and become a nuclear power."

He further rejected any clandestine nuclear activities by Iran in the past years. "This is a big lie that Iran had hidden its activities. All of Iran's activities were announced to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)," Larijani retorted.

He further said the additional budget allocated for Bushehr nuclear powerplant is to expedite its completion.

He said that Iran is able to have access to nuclear-generated electricity with the completion of Bushehr, which, he reckoned to take one year.

Larijani also called on the Western nations to let the IAEA Secretary General Mohammad Elbaradei carry on with his work based on international conventions.

"Tehran regards NPT as a viable international document and has accepted inspection of its facilities based on the treaty. However, it also wants to carry out nuclear research and development activities within the framework of the nuclear watchdog agency."

Tehran in continuing with the nuclear program has opted for a clear and transparent approach and sees no need to hide its activities, the SNSC secretary added.

Larijani stressed that Iran is not looking to prove its policies through force. "We are ready for all types of discussions to secure our legitimate rights."

He further said all the previous governments had made solid contribution to the country's peaceful nuclear program.

On Iran's uranium mines, he referred to the facilities for exploration of uranium in close proximity to the mines.

"The country has the capability of producing yellow cake next to the mines."

Iran has been able to enrich uranium of close to four percent purity. "Today we have nuclear knowledge which should be expanded." He characterized the request for suspension of uranium enrichment as "baseless."

Suspension is meaningless for us, because one cannot build bombs with 164 centrifuges and the Europeans and IAEA inspectors could also attest to this fact.

The SNSC secretary said that US threats of military action against Iran is "psychological publicity."

"The constant repetition of the issue aims to influence our behavior which has also been carried in the past. They should know that today's Iran is different than the past."

He also alluded to Europeans' unfair deal with Iran. After a few rounds of negotiations with the Europeans we strived to show our good intentions by agreeing to suspend all nuclear-related activities. But after a few months and knowing that we will not accept any deal which did not recognize our rights of enrichment they offered a series of superfluous and irrelevant proposal to us, he underscored.

In related news, Larijani said Sunday that if West continues to threaten Iran, the country will stop cooperating with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Addressing students in Sharif Technical University, he said now it is up to the West to make an option, on which Iran's reaction will depend.

"Therefore, they had better use their wits and select a way that will make Iran cooperate with them," added the SNSC secretary.

Turning to the remarks of the US state secretary about the allocation of 70 million dollars to measures against Iran, he said that even if 70 billion dollars were earmarked to the cause, they would get nowhere.

"If you are seeking to disturb Iran, we will do the same, given that we are able to do so but actually do not wish to disturb anyone," noted the UNSC secretary.

... Payvand News - 5/2/06 ... --

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