Iran signals it intends to continue enriching uranium
Iran indicated on Tuesday it would continue enriching uranium needed for its bid to generate nuclear energy, defying an IAEA resolution demanding a halt to the process and American warnings that it cannot pick and choose how it complies with the United Nations nuclear watchdog.
"We will not allow anyone to deprive us of our right to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, and in particular of our right to enrich fuel for our power stations," Iran's Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi was quoted as saying by the official IRNA news agency.
Kharazi said his country was "very determined" to defend such activities, which Washington suspects are part of a secret Iranian bid to develop nuclear weapons.
However, Kharazi also said that despite the disagreements with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), there was no question of the Islamic Republic pulling out of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
"We are currently negotiating with the IAEA so that our rights are not held up for ridicule and so that nobody infringes our country's prestige," he said.
"We have nothing to fear from inspections. When one has nothing to hide, one has no reason to worry," he added, asserting that "we are committed to the NPT and leaving it is not a question." (Albawaba.com)
© 2003 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)
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