‘Firm to prevent Iran from acquiring N-weapons’
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Last Updated: Wednesday, February 29, 2012, 09:58
  
Washington: The United States is determined to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, the White House has said, adding that it hasn't removed any options from its table, even though it believes there is time and space to pursue diplomacy.

"We are determined to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. We take no option off the table when looking at how to deal with Iranian behaviour," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters.

However, the Obama Administration believes that there is time and space to pursue diplomacy, to pressure the Iranian regime, to further press sanctions to get it to change its behaviour, he noted.

"There is a path out of this dead end that Iran has been pursuing, which is to honour its international obligations, forsake its nuclear weapon ambitions, and rejoin the international community by living up to its obligations," he said.

"We believe that the policy that we have pursued with our partners has put unprecedented pressure on Tehran, on the regime, has put great strains on the Iranian economy, great strains on the Iranian political leadership, and that is a course that we will continue to pursue," Carney said.

The US, he said, is keenly aware of the fact that Iran has continued to fail to live up to its obligations, continued to behave in a way that casts doubt on its intentions with its nuclear programme, continued to engage in the kind of rhetoric that makes this process even more difficult for Iran.

"It has also made the world aware of the fact that these sanctions that have been engaged in by the international community have had significant impact," he said, adding, "We work with our allies to step up the pressure every day, every week. We are committed, as Israel is, to preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.

"We have pursued a policy that we believe there is time and space at this point to have an effect, to have the result that we desire."

Reiterating that Iran has failed to live upto the international obligations, he said, "Iran clearly is not living up to its international obligations by refusing to take steps to assure the international community that it is not pursuing nuclear weapons."

"That is why we have engaged in the kind of intense effort through sanctions and other means to pressure Tehran, to pressure the Iranian regime, and why our allies in Europe and around the world have joined with us in that effort. And that effort has had demonstrable effect," he claimed.

As a result of President Obama's relentless efforts, Carney said, Iran is under intense economic pressure.

"It is isolated in ways that it never has been before and it is experiencing strains in its political leadership because of the pressure of the international community. That's the action that this President, this administration has taken since day one," he said.

PTI


First Published: Wednesday, February 29, 2012, 09:58


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