Saturday, August 28, 2004 : Iran Ready to Provide Nuke 'Guarantees' : Iran Ready to Provide Nuke 'Guarantees': "

(AP Photo) Iran Ready to Provide Nuke 'Guarantees'
President Mohammad Khatami Says Iran Is Ready to Provide Nuclear 'Guarantees'

TEHRAN, Iran Aug. 28, 2004 � Iran is ready to provide 'guarantees' it won't seek nuclear weapons, President Mohammad Khatami said Saturday, urging the United Nations' nuclear watchdog agency to close its investigation into the country's program when it meets next month.
The United States, which says Iran is trying to develop weapons, is pushing the International Atomic Energy Agency to refer Tehran to the U.N. Security Council, which could impose sanctions. The IAEA has already sharply criticised Iran for not coming clean about its nuclear program, and European countries have increasingly expressed concern.

But Khatami urged the agency to resist U.S. pressure, saying any concerns over a program Iran insists aims only to produce energy can be cleared up.
'I hope we will go one step forward, away from political pressures, when the agency meets in September. Iran has taken steps toward building greater confidence and many of the problems that existed has been removed,' Khatami told a press conference in Tehran.
'We are ready to do everything necessary to give guarantees that we won't seek nuclear weapons,' Khatami said. 'As Muslims, we can't use nuclear weapons. One who can't use nuclear weapons won't produce them.'
He did not elaborate on the kinds of guarantees his country was willing to give. Iran has allowed international inspections of its nuclear facilities and military sites.
Tehran has made such an offer before, but this is the first time the government has said so publicly it would provide guarantees to ease internationa"


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