Iran Hardens Stand on Nukes

Posted on June 8, 2010

Ahead of the upcoming UN vote on fresh sanctions against Iran because of its nuclear program, it’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has leveled his sights at the US and Russia with dire warnings for both.  He insists that they take this last opportunity to embrace the fuel swap agreement brokered by Brazil and Turkey.

The deal [to which Ahmadinejad refers] resurrected elements of a UN-backed offer for Tehran to part with 1,200kg of low enriched uranium – potential nuclear weapons material – in return for special fuel rods to make medical isotopes.

US officials have criticised the deal as too little, too late – partly because it would not stop Iran enriching uranium – and described it as an attempt to delay sanctions.

Speaking at the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) summit in Istanbul, he declared that:

“The meeting in Tehran [where the deal was brokered] created an opportunity for the US administration and for its allies, and we still hope that they will be able to use this opportunity,” Ahmadinejad said.

“We say that this opportunity will not be repeated.”

He warned that, if the US failed to change its stance, “the first ones to lose would be President Obama and the people of the United States“.

…Ahmadinejad also criticised Russia – whose prime minister, Vladimir Putin, was attending the conference – for backing the sanctions.

Although Russia, together with China, worked to dilute some of the stronger proposed measures, the Iranian leader warned it to “be careful not to be beside the enemies of the Iranian people”.

The vote on new sanctions could come at any time now and is expected to pass.  Turkey, Brazil and Lebanon are not expected to vote.

NOTE:  The above taken from The Guardian.