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US involved in disappearance of Iranian pilgrim in Saudi Arabia: FM

TEHRAN (ISNA)-Iran's Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said the US is involved in disappearance of the Iranian pilgrim Shahram Amiri who went missing in Saudi Arabia.

Speaking to the reporters on the sidelines of cabinet meeting on Wednesday, Mottaki said "Iran is considering the issue of Amiri as an Iranian national who traveled Saudi Arabia to perform Hajj."

"We regard Saudi government as responsible for Amiri's condition and according to some documents available for us, we consider that the US is responsible for his detention."

He continued Iran's Foreign Ministry is pursuing his issue.

Also concerning the issue that Amiri was reported to be a staff of Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), he said "these are speculations discussed by western media and we pursue his case as an Iranian national."

Elsewhere on reports about Mottaki's meeting with the US Council on Foreign Relations; he said "we have not met the council."

Meanwhile as to the IAEA Chief Mohammad ElBaradei's remarks on Additional Protocol and more transparency over Iran's nuclear activities, he said "Mr. ElBaradei is aware of Iran's stance on the Additional Protocol and based on Iran's Parliament approval and the fact that the issue is optional, joining the protocol is not on our agenda."

Meanwhile, regarding the issue that Damascus-based Hamas politburo Chief Khaled Meshaal has recently used Arab Gulf in his speech instead of Persian Gulf, he said "the name of the waterway has always been Persian Gulf and we do not consider other things or rhetoric "right."

He added names except Persian Gulf are against the known name specified by the UN.

Meanwhile, regarding the Argentinean diplomat who reportedly wanted to smuggle a large amount of Persian relics out of Iran, he said "his case is studied by Iran's Foreign Ministry under Vienna and Geneva conventions and bilateral and international framework."

He continued the antiques have been seized and Iran will deal with Argentinean diplomat according to rules.

Meanwhile, regarding the delay in Iran's establishment of a refinery in Sri Lanka, he said "the delay was not on behalf of Iran, it has committed its obligations on the issue."

... Payvand News - 10/07/09 ... --

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