Pressure on Iran to continue: US
Washington: The US on Friday said that the world pressure on Iran would continue as long as Tehran refuses to live up to its international obligations on its controversial nuclear programme, warning that the window for diplomacy remains open, but not indefinitely.
"We judge Iran not by its words but by its actions. And they are consistently in violation of their United Nations obligations, their international obligations. And because of that, they are enduring the most intense sanctions regime in history," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said.
"That has had a dramatic impact on their economy as well as on their politics. And, you know, that pressure will continue, and it will increase as long as Tehran refuses to live up to its international obligations with regards to its nuclear programme," he said in response to a question.
President, Barack Obama, has not taken off any options off the table, and every option remains on the table, he said.
Carney said the US has seen reports that Iran has announced its intention to install advanced centrifuges in a production unit at Natanz.
"There is no indication of how many such centrifuges Iran plans to install or its timeline for doing so. But this does not come as a surprise, given the IAEA's regular reports on Iran's development of advanced centrifuges," he said.
"However, the installation of new advanced centrifuges is a further escalation and a continuing violation, as I was speaking about moments ago, of Iran's obligations under relevant United Nations Security Council and IAEA board resolutions. It would mark yet another provocative step by Iran and will only invite further isolation by the international community," he said.
"We continue to believe that there is time and space for diplomacy to work, but actions like this undercut the efforts of the international community to resolve its concerns over Iran's nuclear weapons," the White House Press Secretary said.
"The issue with Iran is we have pursued a policy that has imposed upon that country the most severe sanctions regime in history, with significant economic consequences. We have worked with our international partners to bring about a consensus on Iran's behavior that never existed in the past.
"And that too has increased the isolation that Tehran feels. And the president has also made clear that when it comes to Iran's development of nuclear weapons that all options remain on the table. The window for diplomacy remains open, but it will not be open indefinitely," he said.
"It is the government that we deal with, and it is the government that continues to flout its international obligations. And that behavior is illegitimate," Carney said.
Meanwhile, during his confirmation hearing, Defence Secretary nominee Chuck Hagel said Iran must not get weapons of mass destruction. "I've always said the military option should remain on the table to assure that Iran does not get nuclear weapons," he said.