Erdogan Rejects ´Outside Pressure´ on Iran (INN) ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) By Gabe Kahn 03/28/12)
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Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan cozied up to Iran during
a visit to Tehran on Wednesday and rejected outside pressure on the
Islamic Republic´s nuclear program.
“No one has the right to impose anything on anyone with regards to
nuclear energy, provided that it is for peaceful purposes,” Erdoğan
said at a news conference after talks with Iranian First Vice
President Mohammad Reza Rahimi. “Everyone with commonsense opposes
nuclear weapons,” he added.
Erdogan – who is in Tehran for talks with President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad and other Iranian officials – offered to host talks
between Iran and world powers to bring about a negotiated settlement
over an ongoing dispute about its nuclear program.
Iran, a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, has
refused to meet its obligations under international law and barred
international inspectors from entering key nuclear sites.
The US and its allies charge Iran is seeking nuclear weapons in
violation of the NPT, which has been buttressed by two recent
International Atomic Energy Agency reports citing Iran´s obstruction
of inspectors and intelligence reports indicating Tehran has sought –
and continues to seek – technology of a nuclear nature.
The UN nuclear watchdog has also raised pointed questions about
Iran´s push to enrich its uranium stockpiles to 20% purity, a key
jumping off point should Iran make a dash to enrich its uranium to
the 93% needed for nuclear weapons.
Iran says it is enriching uranium to 20% in order to research medical
isotopes, but proliferation experts say Tehran is enriching far more
uranium than is necessary for that purpose and does not have a
sufficiently advanced medical research sector to support the claim.
Turkey has built close economic ties with Iran and has been at odds
with Washington over how to induce Tehran to halt its nuclear
program, arguing for a diplomatic solution to the standoff instead of
sanctions - with the final banking channels to Tehran going through
However, Turkey has also decided to host NATO defense shield radar
that would warn of any Iranian ballistic missiles in the region,
sparking protests from some Iranian officials.
Negotiations between Iran and the group of P5+1 – consisting of the
five permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany – are
expected to resume in April.
Tehran signaled ahead of the talks that it is willing to
allow “permanent human monitoring” of its nuclear sites and “full
transparency” if the West agrees to sell it enriched uranium and
provide civilian nuclear assistance.
Iran did not specifically say it would suspend its uranium enrichment
program – a key demand by Washington and Jerusalem to avert a
potential military strike – but analysts say the condition of uranium
sales implies the issue will be “on the table.” (IsraelNationalNews ©
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