Washington: The US will make sure that Iran does not obtain a nuclear weapon as it would trigger a nuclear arms race and "destabilise" an already volatile region, the White House has said.
Terming as "unacceptable" the Iran's idea to obtain a nuclear weapon, the US said it is not entering into an agreement with the country to freeze its nuclear program for 10 years
"I'm loathe to get into the negotiating details of the position that is adopted by the US and our international partners when they are sitting across the table from the Iranians. However, I will say that there was a report today indicating that we were negotiating essentially a 10-year deal. Those reports are not correct" White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said yesterday.
"That does not reflect the accurate negotiating position of the United States and our international partners," Earnest said adding that the objective of negotiations with Iran was to reach an agreement with the Iranians that they can verify on a continuing, ongoing basis.
He said there was ample reason for the international community to not put a lot of faith in the claims of the Iranians when it comes to their nuclear program.
"It was just a few years ago that there was this covert nuclear facility in Iran that had previously been undeclared that did yield some evidence indicating that Iran was trying to secretly develop a nuclear weapon," he said.
What we need is a clear agreement from the international community and the Iranians, and an agreement that is verifiable. Any part of an agreement will include ready access by international community to ensure that Iran is living up to their end of the bargain, Earnest said.
"What is unacceptable is the idea that Iran would obtain a nuclear weapon. That has been our policy for quite some time. The whole purpose of these negotiations is to make sure that Iran doesn't obtain a nuclear weapon," Earnest said.
"The reason for that is that it would be terribly destabilising to the region. It could precipitate - and I think you could even say is likely to precipitate - a nuclear arms race in what is already a very volatile region of the world," he said.
"That would not be in the best interest of American national security. And it certainly would not be in the best interest of our closest ally in the region, Israel," he said.
That's why we are engaged in these negotiations. The President's indicated that the time for conducing these kinds of negotiations is running short. We have sort of reached the other end of these things, we can have a more detailed conversation about what that deal looks like, Earnest said.
"We will have an opportunity in the coming weeks to consider either to evaluate an agreement that's been reached or to evaluate an agreement that the Iranians walked away from," he said.