Sunday, November 07, 2004

Telegraph | News | Britain will not back Iran war, says Straw

Telegraph | News | Britain will not back Iran war, says Straw: "Britain will not back Iran war, says Straw
(Filed: 04/11/2004)

Britain will not back military action against Iran if President George W Bush decides to confront Tehran in his second White House term, Jack Straw has said.


Jack Straw with the Duke of Edinburgh in Germany
The Foreign Secretary rejected claims that hardliners in Mr Bush's administration could press for an attack on Iran as "inconceivable".

Mr Bush has labelled Iran as part of his "axis of evil" and has led calls for the United Nations to crack down on Tehran's alleged attempts to make nuclear weapons.

However, Mr Straw said the prospects of another conflict on top of the war on Iraq were "pretty remote" and that the international community would resolve the dispute "constructively".

"I don't see any circumstances in which military action would be justified against Iran," he told BBC Radio 4's Today programme.

Mr Straw, who is in Germany for the Queen's state visit, also described Mr Bush's re-election yesterday as an "opportunity" for Europe to heal its divisions with Washington.

Mr Bush's second term in the White House could also lead to Europe and the US making progress on several issues, particularly the Middle East peace process.

"It is in everybody's interests - including that of continental Europe - that we work together with the United States and that is what the Prime Minister Tony Blair and I and the rest of the Government will be seeking to do," he said.

20 October 2004: Iraq hampering US ability to deal with 'axis of evil'"

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