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Iran has to opt between isolation and reintegration: US

Last Updated: Thursday, September 10, 2009 - 11:23

Washington: Stepping up pressure on Iran over its controversial nuclear programme, the US on Wednesday said that Tehran will have to make a choice whether it wants isolation or reintegration with the international community.
"The (Obama) administration has made it clear to Iran and the whole international community that we have a new approach to Iran. We have made it clear to Iran that the choice really is theirs to make," State Department spokesman Ian Kelly said.

"They have a stark choice: They can continue down this path of isolation from the international community, or they can choose to reintegrate with the international community. That choice is out there for them, and we look forward to learning their choice," he said.

Kelly said the United States has received a proposal from Tehran, and added that the administration would confer with its partners before taking a call on it.

"We are now reviewing it seriously and carefully. We plan to confer with our partners in the P-5+1 group. And I expect that we`ll have more to say about it in the coming
days," he said.

P5 +1 refers to the five permanent Security Council members – US, China, Britain, France and Russia – and Germany. The group has offered to Tehran a package of economic and political incentives in lieu of suspension of its nuclear enrichment programme.

“I think what we will be looking for in these proposals, or in this proposal, is, first of all, if they have responded to our longstanding offer to engage with us in the P-5+1 process," Kelly said.

"And second of all, we will look to see how in this proposal they address these longstanding concerns of the international community about Iran`s failure to comply with its non-proliferation treaty, IAEA and Security Council obligations. So those are a few of the things that we’ll be looking for," he said.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad earlier this week ruled out talks on Tehran`s "undeniable" nuclear rights, insisting that any dialogue on the nuclear issue would be focused on "cooperation on peaceful use of atomic energy" and "non-proliferation”.

"In our view the nuclear question is finished. We will not negotiate over Iran`s undeniable rights," Ahmadinejad told a press conference on Monday.

Bureau Report

First Published: Thursday, September 10, 2009 - 11:23

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