Khatami: Iran entitled to nuclear energy
Iran-UN, Politics, 8/25/2006
Iran's former president Mohammad Khatami today stressed Iran's right of access to nuclear energy and fuel for peaceful purposes.
After an address to a seminar at the United Nation University in Tokyo, Khatami told the audience that Iran had no desire to build nuclear weapons and does not need to do so.
"Iran doesn't want to get access to nuclear weapons. Not at all. We do not need them," said Khatami.
Khatami emphasized that Tehran has the legitimate right to produce energy from nuclear technology as other countries do.
"Concerning wide application of nuclear energy worldwide, Iran is entitled to having the energy and its fuel and to this end, Iranian scientists have tried to attain the technology despite sanctions.
"Others say we will meet your fuel; what a guarantee there will be that after building several power plants and spending billions of dollars for the purpose, others will not deprive us from the energy by imposing their own traits and they will not issue sanctions against us for whatever reason?" asked Khatami.
"Isn't there any guarantee that we will be able to provide the fuel alike other countries such as Japan, Canada and elsewhere to protect our national interests?" "If they are very much concerned about nuclear weapons, we are a member of NPT (Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty); though not having signed the additional protocol, it was fully implemented on voluntary basis during my presidency; and Iran is under supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency," said Khatami.
"If there is concern over nuclear bomb, why we, who have not yet achieved the peaceful nuclear technology, i.e. production of uranium with 3.5 percent enrichment -- that serves as fuel for nuclear plants -- are not trusted and put under pressure, while the powers that have hundreds of nuclear warheads in the region and are capable of producing tens of nuclear bombs a year, are not only put under pressure but are also supported? "What is observed in the world is this double-standard logic; and we should in fact move into the world wherein we will be able to meet our needs by relying on our own power and on God.
"Therefore, Iran's nuclear program is fully peaceful and in its primitive state; it has been gained without reliance on foreigners and solely through reliance on the domestic might and will be preserved.
He said that however, Iran does its best to ensure settlement of issues within framework of international regulations so as not to lead to any crisis, though there are some people trying to turn such an ordinary and simple issue into a crisis and that in a region where escalation of tension is like pouring gasoline on fire.
"We are facing big crises in the Middle East; and I hope that mankind's wisdom and sense will come to the conclusion that creation of another crisis in the region, which is opt for escalation of the crisis, will not be wise." The Iranian cleric supported dialogue as the best option for settlement of the nuclear dispute.
"The issue can be solved through dialogue and logic and Iranian government too has announced that is ready for talks under any condition and in any form," he said.
Khatami is in Japan to take part in a Conference on Religion and Peace in Kyoto.
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