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World Council for the Cedars Revolution

Mar 02nd
Home arrow News Content arrow Blog arrow Blog Items arrow Intelligence arrow Iran: We Won't Give Up Our Nuclear Rights
Iran: We Won't Give Up Our Nuclear Rights PDF Print E-mail
Written by CBS, DPA   
Saturday, 02 August 2008

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, right, shakes hands with Syria's President Bashar Assad, during his official welcoming ceremony in Tehran on Saturday, Aug, 2, 2008. (AP/S. Safari, Mehr News Agency)
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, right, shakes hands with Syria's President Bashar Assad, during his official welcoming ceremony in Tehran on Saturday, Aug, 2, 2008. (AP/S. Safari, Mehr News Agency)

Ahmadinejad Dismisses Call To Halt Uranium Enrichment Despite West's Threats Of Further Sanctions, believes Israel collapse achievable

Iran: We Won't Give Up Our Nuclear Rights
Ahmadinejad Dismisses Call To Halt Uranium Enrichment Despite West's Threats Of Further Sanctions
TEHRAN, Aug. 2, 2008

(CBS/AP) Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad insisted Saturday that Tehran will not give up its "nuclear rights," according to the official Web site of the Iranian leader, in remarks that rebuffed an informal deadline set by the U.N. Security Council's five permanent members and Germany.

Any participation by Iran in international talks on the nuclear issue would "definitely be aimed at reinforcing" those rights, Ahmadinejad was quoted as saying in the report.

The Web site said Ahmadinejad made the remarks during discussions with Syrian President Beshar Assad, who arrived on a two-day visit.

"The Iranian nation will not give up a single iota of its nuclear rights," Ahmadinejad said.

Assad is in Tehran to discuss Iran's controversial uranium enrichment following a request from French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

Syria is Iran's closest Arab ally - the two countries have had close relations since 1980, when Syria sided with Persian Iran against Iraq in the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war.

Assad, who has been seeking a more prominent Mideast role for Syria, promised Sarkozy during a visit to France in July to try to persuade Iran to offer proof to the West that it isn't developing nuclear weapons.

Iran's claims that it only wants nuclear technology for the production of energy have failed to quell Western suspicions that it is seeking a pathway to an atomic bomb.

Tehran was given an informal two-week deadline, set July 19 by the Security Council's permanent members plus Germany, to stop expanding uranium enrichment - at least temporarily - in exchange for their commitment to stop seeking new U.N. sanctions.

The deadline expires this weekend.

Fox News Channel Video News Update Saturday August 2, 2008

Ahmadinejad's stance signaled both a failure of Assad's mission and a rejection of the deadline, although the wording indicated he was not ruling out international talks on Iran's nuclear program.

Press Secretary Dana Perino says the U.S. will consult with its allies on the Iranian statement.

Perino, who had earlier warned of "negative consequences" if Iran rejected the United States' offer, said, "It's a shame that Iran does not take us up on our generous incentives package."

Perino's comments came in Kennebunkport, Maine as President Bush spent the weekend at the Bush family's seaside mansion.

CBS News White House Correspondent Peter Maer, who is in Kennebunkport, said Mr. Bush will be briefed on the response.

Meanwhile in Brussels, a European Union official said Saturday that the office of EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana had not yet received an answer from Iran but expected a reply "in the coming days" after the weekend deadline.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue, said EU nations and diplomats are not too concerned about Tehran's adherence to the exact deadline - but are keen for Iran to come back with a concrete reply that could form the basis of further negotiations.

Germany's Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier urged Iran to stop playing for time and deliver a "clear answer" to the latest initiative. "Stop dallying," Steinmeier was quoted as saying in an interview with the weekly Der Spiegel that was released Saturday.

Steinmeier said he expected "a clear signal for a mutual freeze: We would freeze our sanctions efforts and Iran the development of its centrifuges." He warned it would be "negligent" for Iran to pass on the opportunity and added that in case of Tehran's refusal, the six nations would consider increasing pressure on Iran "via sanctions."

The Security Council has slapped three sets of sanctions on Iran over its enrichment and reprocessing of uranium, which can produce the ingredients for a bomb but which Tehran insists is for peaceful purposes only.

In Damascus, Syria's official news agency SANA reported on Assad's visit as having affirmed "identical views" of the two countries on "major regional and international" issues. The agency, which is a government mouthpiece, hailed the two nations' rejection of "foreign dictates" and stressed the need for a "timetable for a withdrawal of foreign forces from" Iraq - an allusion to U.S. troops there.

Assad's visit was also to focus on economic ties between Tehran and Damascus that have resulted in over a dozen projects in Syria, worth US$896 million, SANA said, adding that both governments are "seriously seeking to increase the size of joint investments to more than US$3 billion over the next years."

© MMVIII, CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.



Ahmadinejad believes Israel collapse achievable (2nd Roundup)
Aug 2, 2008, 21:30 GMT

Tehran - Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Saturday that the collapse of Israel and its Zionist regime was no longer an unachievable aim.

'Today's situation is that neither the return of Palestinians (refugees) nor formation of a Palestinian government and even the collapse of the Zionist regime is an unachievable aim,' Ahmadinejad said, according to Fars news agency.

'The Zionist regime has lost the philosophy of its existence and is no longer capable of implementing the policies of the United States and Europe in the region,' he told visiting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

While referring to Syria's indirect talks with Iran's arch-foe Israel, Ahmadinejad said that 'more joint harmonization could be effective to continue bilateral ties on a suitable basis.'

'Some countries want to create distance between Iran and Syria but they are making a mistake as the two countries will forever stay beside each other,' Ahmadinejad said.

Fars quoted al-Assad as saying that Damascus would 'with seriousness' continue expansion of ties with Tehran and 'there would be no changes in bilateral relations.'

He further said Israel 'was not that strong' and that regional countries could reach their aims through resistance.

Ahmadinejad and al-Assad discussed improved cooperation at the start of a two-day summit in Tehran Saturday, state television network IRIB reported.

The two presidents explored ways to strengthen and expand bilateral and international cooperation 'as a means of maintaining regional stability and security,' IRIB reported.

The two sides also voiced their readiness to increase annual trade from the current 340 million to 640 million dollars.

In a commentary, IRIB TV called Assad's visit to Tehran a clear signal to the West that, despite Syria's indirect talks with Israel, the Tehran-Damascus alliance would continue to exist.

Assad is also to meet on Sunday with Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Top of the agenda will be Syria's indirect talks, under Turkish auspices, with Iran's arch-foe Israel, which has irritated Tehran. Assad is expected to defend the talks in his meetings with Iranian officials.

Also on the agenda will be the expansion of bilateral ties and Iran's reassurance that its nuclear projects are only for peaceful purposes.

Israel and the US have urged Syria to end its alliance with Tehran and its support for radical Palestinian factions and Lebanon's Hezbollah opposition group.

Bilateral ties were cemented by a military cooperation agreement signed in 2006.



Iran, on Deadline Day, Vows No Nuclear Retreat
By Fredrik Dahl

Iran said on Saturday it would not back down "one iota" in its nuclear row with major powers, voicing defiance on the day of an informal deadline set by the West over Tehran's disputed atomic ambitions.

Western officials gave Tehran two weeks from July 19 to respond to their offer to hold off from imposing more U.N. sanctions on Iran if it froze any expansion of its nuclear work.

That would suggest a deadline of Saturday but Iran, which has repeatedly ruled out curbing its nuclear activities, dismissed the idea of having two weeks to reply.

The West accuses Iran of seeking to build nuclear warheads under cover of a civilian power program. Iran, the world's fourth-largest oil producer, denies the charge.

"In whichever negotiation we take part ... it is unequivocally with the view to the realization of Iran's nuclear right and the Iranian nation would not retreat one iota from its rights," President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said.

He made the remark in a statement posted on the presidential website after talks with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Assad visited Tehran a few weeks after he said in Paris he would respond to French President Nicolas Sarkozy's request and use his good relations with the Islamic Republic to help resolve the nuclear stand-off.

The statement quoted the Syrian leader as saying that based on international agreements, all countries had the right to enrich uranium and have nuclear power stations.

Enrichment can provide fuel for power plants, which Iran says is its aim, but also material for bombs if refined more.


The statement quoted Assad as saying what were important to Syria were international agreements relating to Iran's nuclear program.

"We have told the European countries that ... every country, including Iran, has the right to engage in uranium enrichment and to possess nuclear power stations based on agreements."

The United States, China, Russia, Britain, France and Germany in June offered Iran economic and other incentives to coax it into halting its most sensitive nuclear activities.

The freeze idea is aimed at getting preliminary talks started, although formal negotiations on the incentives package will not start before Iran stops enriching uranium.

Iran, whose refusal to halt the work has drawn three rounds of U.N. sanctions since 2006, has rejected suspension in the past and has given no indication that it is ready for a freeze.

In Brussels, a European Union official said Iran had so far ignored the deadline, but the bloc is ready to wait a few more days for a reply. "What matters is that we get a clear answer quickly, it's not a matter of one day," said the official.

A White House spokeswoman said it was unfortunate the Iranians had not responded to the incentives offer: "It just further isolates their country," Dana Perino said in Washington.

Diplomats say new U.N. sanctions on Iran are unlikely before September and may not happen this year, though Western states may take tougher measures of their own. Russia, one of the six powers facing Iran, has also opposed a deadline.

(Additional reporting by Hashem Kalantari in Tehran, Ingrid Melander in Brussels and Washington bureau; editing by Andrew Roche)

Copyright 2008 Reuters News Service. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Copyright © 2008 ABC News Internet Ventures


The U.S. And Iran - TIMELINE

A look the relationship between the U.S. and Iran, from friendlier times to today's more contentious relationship. (Photo: CBS) 
   Aug. 19, 1953

Prime Minister Mohammed Mosaddeq, a nationalist who wanted Iran to profit more from its oil reserves, is deposed in a CIA orchestrated coup, supported and funded by the British and the U.S. governments in order to preserve Western control of Iran's oil infrastructure.
   May 1975

Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlevi visits the United States and meets with President Gerald R. Ford.
   December 1977

President Jimmy Carter visits Iran and in a New Year's Eve toast says, "Iran, under the great leadership of the shah, is an island of stability" in the Middle East. The State Department says this was the last "substantive" high-level meeting between the two nations.
   Jan. 16, 1979

The Shah is forced to leave the country after widespread demonstrations and strikes.
   Feb. 1, 1979

Islamic religious leader Ayatollah Khomeini returns from exile and takes power.
   November 1979

Iranian militants seize the U.S. Embassy and take 52 Americans hostage for 444 days.
   April 1980

The United States breaks diplomatic relations with Iran and imposes economic sanctions over the hostage crisis.

A series of secret meetings take place between the U.S. and Iran, in which the United States sold weapons to Iran and gave the proceeds to Central American rebels. The scandal came to be known as the Iran-Contra affair.
   March 2000

The Clinton administration lifts a ban on U.S. imports of Iranian luxury goods and says it would seek a legal settlement that could free Iranian assets frozen since 1979.
   September 2000

President Bill Clinton lingered after his address to the United Nations to hear Iranian President Mohammad Khatami speak. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and Kharrazi attend an eight-nation meeting on Afghanistan.


Officials from both sides communicate before and after the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan to topple the Taliban, whom Tehran also opposed.
   November 2004

Secretary of State Colin Powell is seated at dinner next to his Iranian counterpart, Kamal Kharrazi, during a 20-nation meeting in Egypt to discuss Iraq's future.
   May 2006

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad writes President Bush an 18-page letter, lambasting the U.S. leader for his handling of the Sept. 11 attacks. 
   September 2006

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was in the same room at the United Nations as Mottaki during a meeting on Iraq.
   May 2006

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad writes President Bush an 18-page letter, lambasting the U.S. leader for his handling of the Sept. 11 attacks.
   September 2006

Rice was in the same room at the United Nations as Mottaki during a meeting on Iraq.
   March 2007

U.S. and Iranian envoys participate in a conference in Baghdad.
   May 5, 2007

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki exchange a brief, polite greeting at a conference in Egypt.
   May 28, 2007

The U.S. and Iranian ambassadors in Baghdad hold four hours of talks on Iraq. American Ambassador Ryan Crocker says the two sides agreed broadly on policy toward Iraq but insists that Iran end its support for militants. Iranian Ambassador Hassan Kazemi Qomi later says another meeting would take place in less than a month.
   May 29, 2007

U.S. academic Haleh Esfandiari and two other Iranian-Americans are charged with endangering national security and espionage, Iran's judiciary spokesman said. Esfandiari had been trapped in Iran since December, when three masked men with knives stole her luggage and passport as she headed to the airport to leave the country. In the weeks before her arrest, she was called in for questioning daily on her activities.
   Sept. 19, 2007

A request by Iran's president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to lay a wreath at the World Trade Center site when he visits to address the U.N.'s General Assembly was turned down by police who cited security concerns and blasted by U.S. diplomats as an attempt to turn ground zero into a "photo op."
   Oct. 25, 2007

The Bush administration announced sweeping new sanctions against Iran — the harshest since the takeover of the U.S. Embassy in 1979 — again charging that Tehran supports terrorism in the Middle East, exports missiles and is engaging in a nuclear build up. The measures target the Revolutionary Guard Corps and a number of banks and are designed, among other things, to punish Tehran for its support of terrorist organizations in Iraq and the Middle East.
   Jan. 6, 2008

Three U.S. Navy ships faced down five Iranian boats in a flare-up in the Persian Gulf. Video and audio recordings clearly show the Iranian boats confronting U.S. ships, and a voice speaking in heavily-accented English can be heard threatening that the American vessels were going to explode, military officials who had seen and heard the recordings said. President Bush denounced the incident as a "provocative act."
   March 12, 2008

The Bush administration imposes financial sanctions on a Bahrain bank the United States alleges is controlled by Iran's Bank Melli, which has been accused of helping Iran spread weapons of mass destruction. The Treasury Department's action targets Future Bank B.S.C. Any bank accounts or other financial assets found in the U.S. belonging to the bank must be frozen. Americans also are prohibited from doing business with the bank.

    July 9, 2008

Iran test-fired nine long- and medium-range missiles during war games that officials said aimed to show the country can retaliate against any U.S. or Israeli attack. The exercise was conducted at the mouth of the Strait of Hormuz, a strategic waterway through which about 40 percent of the world's oil passes. "Iran's development of ballistic missiles is a violation of United Nations Security Council resolutions and completely inconsistent with Iran's obligations to the world," said White House spokesman Gordon Johndroe.
   July 10, 2008

Iran test-fired more long-range missiles in a second round of exercises meant to show that the country can defend itself against any attack by the U.S. or Israel, Iranian state television reported. The weapons have "special capabilities" and included missiles launched from naval ships in the Persian Gulf, along with torpedoes and surface-to-surface missiles, the broadcast said. 

Iran Nuclear Chronology - TIMELINE

Events in history of Iran's nuclear program, which it claims is purely peaceful, since it first came to light. (Photo: AP / CBS) 

 August 2002

Iranian exiles say that Tehran has built a vast uranium enrichment plant at Natanz and a heavy water plant at Arak without informing the United Nations.

 September 2002

Construction work begins on Iran's first nuclear reactor at the Bushehr power plant.
   December 2002

The existence of sites at Natanz and Arak is confirmed by satellite photographs. The U.S. accuses Tehran of "across-the-board pursuit of weapons of mass destruction". Iran agrees to inspections by the International Atomic Energy Authority (IAEA). 

 February 2003

Iranian President Mohammed Khatami reveals that Iran has unearthed uranium deposits and announces plans to develop a nuclear fuel cycle. IAEA chief Mohammed ElBaradei travels to Iran with a team of inspectors to begin probing Tehran's nuclear plans. 

 June 2003

IAEA chief Mohammed ElBaradei accuses Iran of not revealing the extent of its nuclear work, and urges leaders to sign up for more intrusive inspections.
   August 2003

Traces of highly enriched weapons-grade uranium found at Natanz. 
   September 2003

More enriched uranium discovered, prompting urgent calls for Iran to sign a voluntary protocol formalizing a tougher inspection regime. 
   October 2003

After meeting French, German and British foreign ministers, Tehran agrees to stop producing enriched uranium and formally decides to sign the Additional Protocol. No evidence is produced to confirm the end of enrichment. 
   November 2003

ElBaradei says there is "no evidence" that Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons. The U.S. disagrees.
   December 2003

Iran signs the protocol at the IAEA headquarters in Vienna.
   February 2004

Abdul Qadeer Khan, the father of Pakistan's nuclear bomb, is reported to have sold Iran nuclear weapons technology.

IAEA report says Iran experimented with polonium-210, which can be used to trigger the chain reaction in a nuclear bomb. Iran did not explain the experiments. Iran again agrees to suspend enrichment, but again does not.
   June 2004

Tehran is criticized by the IAEA for trying to import magnets for centrifuges and for not offering "full, timely and pro-active" co-operation with inspectors.
   September 2004

IAEA orders Iran to stop preparations for a large-scale uranium enrichment. U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell labels Iran a growing danger and calls for the U.N. Security Council to impose sanctions. Iran says it has resumed large-scale conversion of uranium ore into gas. 
   February 2005

President Mohammad Khatami says no Iranian government will give up nuclear technology program.
   April 2005

Iran announces plans to resume uranium conversion at Isfahan.

   May 2005

European Union states warn that any resumption of conversion would end negotiations linked to trade and economic issues. Iran agrees to wait for detailed proposals from the Europeans at the end of July. 
   August 2005

Hardliner Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is installed as Iranian president, as Tehran pledges an "irreversible" resumption of enrichment. Iran resumes sensitive fuel cycle work at its uranium conversion facility near Isfahan. 
   September 2005

A study by the International Institute for Strategic Studies concludes that Iran is still several years away from acquiring a nuclear weapons capability.

Speaking before the U.N. General Assembly, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says his country has an "inalienable right" to produce nuclear fuel.

The IAEA passes a resolution setting Iran up for referral to the U.N. Security Council at a later date, on the grounds of Tehran's non-compliance with international nuclear safeguards.
   Jan. 10, 2006

Iran removes U.N. seals at Natanz enrichment plant and resumes nuclear fuel research.
   Feb. 4, 2006

IAEA votes to report Iran to U.N. Security Council. Iran ends snap U.N. nuclear inspections the next day. Ten days later Iran restarts small-scale feeding of uranium gas into centrifuges at Natanz after suspension for more than 2 years.

   March 8, 2006

IAEA report to U.N. Security Council says it cannot verify Iran's atomic activities are peaceful.
   April 11, 2006

Iran announces, and IAEA confirms, it has produced low-grade enriched uranium suitable for use in power stations.
   July 31, 2006

U.N. Security Council demands Iran suspend its nuclear activities by Aug. 31. In a resolution, council for first time makes legally binding demands on Iran and threatens sanctions.
   Aug. 31, 2006

IAEA announces Iran has not met deadline to suspend its program and has resumed enriching uranium.
   Sept. 26, 2006

Russia and Iran agree on a start-up date of September 2007 for Iran's first nuclear power station at Bushehr.

   Nov. 14, 2006

A confidential IAEA report says Iran is pushing ahead with uranium enrichment and still stonewalling investigations by the agency despite the risk of sanctions. The report also says Iran has started up a second experimental chain of 164 interlinked centrifuge machines and has begun feeding uranium UF6 gas into them for enrichment.
  Dec. 23, 2006

U.N. Security Council votes to impose sanctions and gives the country 60 days to suspend uranium enrichment. Iran calls the resolution an illegal measure.
   Jan. 22, 2007

Iran says it has barred entry to 38 IAEA inspectors after hardliners demanded retaliation for sanctions.
   Feb. 19, 2007

Russia announces a delay in work on the Bushehr reactor saying Iran had missed several payments worth a total of more than $70 million for the construction of the reactor in southwest Iran. Tehran says its payments are up to date. 
   Feb. 21, 2007

The 60-day grace period Iran had been given to stop enriching uranium expires.

   Feb. 22, 2007

The IAEA says in a report that Iran has expanded its uranium enrichment program instead of complying with a U.N. Security Council ultimatum to freeze it. The finding clears the way for harsher sanctions against Tehran. The agency also said the Islamic republic continues building both a reactor that will use heavy water and a heavy water production plant — also in defiance of the Security Council.
   March 12, 2007

The state-run Russian company building Iran's first nuclear power plant said that the reactor's launch will be postponed because of Iranian payment delays. Russia has accused Iran of paying only a fraction of the $25 million monthly payments for construction work at the Bushehr reactor in recent months. Russia's federal nuclear agency said the launch date would be postponed by at least two months because the Iranians had made no payments since Jan. 17.
   Nov. 15, 2007

A report from the U.N nuclear watchdog agency found Iran to be generally truthful about key aspects of its nuclear history, but it warned that its knowledge of Tehran's present atomic work was shrinking. The International Atomic Energy Agency report also confirmed that Tehran continued to defy the U.N. Security Council by ignoring its repeated demands to freeze uranium enrichment, a potential pathway to nuclear arms. 

   Dec. 3, 2007

Senior U.S. intelligence officials said Iran halted its nuclear weapons development program in the fall of 2003 under international pressure but is continuing to enrich uranium, which means it may still be able to develop a weapon between 2010 and 2015. Officials said the new findings suggest that diplomacy was effective in containing Iran's nuclear ambitions.
   Jan. 22, 2008

The U.N. Security Council's permanent members and Germany agreed on the contents of a new draft resolution on sanctions against Iran. Diplomats said the draft resolution would moderately expand existing sanctions, but would not feature new economic sanctions.
   March 3, 2008

The U.N. Security Council approved a third round of sanctions against Iran with near unanimous support, sending a strong signal to Tehran that its refusal to suspend uranium enrichment is unacceptable and becoming increasingly costly. For the first time, the resolution bans trade with Iran in goods which have both civilian and military uses.
   May 26, 2008

In an unusually strongly worded report, the U.N.'s nuclear watchdog said Iran may be withholding information needed to establish whether it tried to make nuclear weapons. The tone of the IAEA report suggesting Tehran continues to stonewall the U.N. nuclear monitor revealed a glimpse of the frustration felt by agency investigators stymied in their attempts to gain full answers to suspicious aspects of Iran's past nuclear activities.

   July 9, 2008

Iran test-fired nine long- and medium-range missiles during war games that officials said aimed to show the country can retaliate against any U.S. or Israeli attack.
   July 10, 2008

Iran test-fired more long-range missiles in a second round of exercises meant to show that the country can defend itself against any attack by the U.S. or Israel, Iranian state television reported. The weapons have "special capabilities" and included missiles launched from naval ships in the Persian Gulf, along with torpedoes and surface-to-surface missiles, the broadcast said. 


Iran's nuclear signals 3:41
How serious is Iran about altering its nuclear program. Richard Haass from the Council on Foreign Relations explains.


NBC Ahmadinejad Iran not making a bomb part1
In an interview with Brian Williams, host of NBC's "Nightly News," Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says the government is not working to make a nuclear bomb.


NBC Ahmadinejad Iran not making a bomb part2
In an interview with Brian Williams, host of NBC's "Nightly News," Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says the government is not working to make a nuclear bomb.

Last Updated ( Saturday, 02 August 2008 )
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