Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Iran: U.S. has history of reneging on vows of extending goodwill

Iran: U.S. has history of reneging on vows of extending goodwill: "Iran: U.S. has history of reneging on vows of extending goodwill


Associated Press
November 4, 2004


TEHRAN, Iran -- Students burned American flags and effigies of President Bush on Wednesday to mark the 25th anniversary of the takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, while a top Iranian official accused Washington of undermining his country's goodwill gestures.

To chants of "Death to America," about 3,000 students gathered outside the former U.S. Embassy to mark the Nov. 4, 1979, storming of the building by students, who held 52 Americans hostage for 444 days. By the Iranian calendar, the anniversary fell on Wednesday.

The three-hour protest coincided with news that Bush had won re-election.

Also Wednesday, Hossein Mousavian, a top security official, blamed successive U.S. administrations for the continued strained relations.

"Iran has showed a lot of goodwill, but America has reneged on its promises each time, effectively spoiling any chance of a rapprochement," Mousavian told The Associated Press.

The United States broke diplomatic relations with Iran after the embassy takeover and never restored them.

Today, the two countries are at odds on Iran's nuclear program, which Tehran contends is solely for energy purposes. Washington accuses Iran of secretly trying to build a nuclear bomb.

Mousavian said about 50 world leaders in the 1980s conveyed messages to President Hashemi Rafsanjani that Washington would show "unbelievable goodwill" if Iran used its influence to release Western hostages held in Lebanon at that time.

"We showed goodwill and helped release the hostages, but America reneged on its promises," he said.

"We openly supported the Afghan northern alliance against the Taliban. Without our support, America would have not been able to overthrow the Taliban in Afghanistan," Mousavian added.

Instead of rewarding Iran, he complained, Bush included Iran in his "axis of evil," further worsening relations."

SOUTHWEST ASIA Iranian News: Mullah Rafsanjani: Iran insists on fuel production

SOUTHWEST ASIA Iranian News: Mullah Rafsanjani: Iran insists on fuel production: "Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani here Sunday stressed the need for production of nuclear fuel by Iran. In a meeting with South African Ambassador to Tehran Yusuf Saloojee, Mullah said preventing Iran from producing its needed nuclear fuel can serve as a black point in modern history."

Gulf Daily News - Iran to strike back if nuclear sites hit

Gulf Daily News: "Iran to strike back if nuclear sites hit

TEHRAN: Iran threatened yesterday to strike back at Israel or any other country that attacked its nuclear facilities."If Israel or any other country attacks any site in Iran, we know no limits to threaten their interests," Deputy Revolutionary Guards Commander Mohammad-Baqer Zolqadr said.

"That means anywhere in the world, within their borders or outside it," he said on the sidelines of an anti-US conference in Tehran.

Israeli warplanes successfully destroyed the Osirak nuclear reactor in Iraq in 1981. Iran has stationed anti-aircraft batteries around its nuclear plants and built many of its facilities underground.

Iranian officials have also warned they can strike back at Israel with its medium-range Shahab-3 missile, which can also hit US military bases in the Gulf.

Zolqadr denied Iran was developing nuclear weapons, saying the Islamic state preferred to rely on a volunteer militia force, which he said numbered 10 million, to defend the country.

Earlier the commander addressed high-school students at a conference entitled "The World Without America".

"The world without America is a world without oppression, without terror, without invasion, without massacre," he said in a speech that catalogued US "crimes" ranging from the massacre of native Americans to the atom bomb on Hiroshima.

A video clip played for the audience showed gruesome pictures of injured children lying in hospital beds in Iraq, which US-led forces invaded last year.

Zolqadr said an Iraq-style invasion of Iran was out of the question thanks to Iran's growing military might.

Meanwhile, the European Union's three big powers were "pretty close" to a deal with Iran that would freeze Tehran's nuclear fuel enrichment and reprocessing activities, EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana said.

Solana said that if an agreement was reached, there would be no reason to refer Iran to the UN Security Council for sanctions over its disputed programme.

"Progress has been made and we are waiting now for the final response from Iran," he said, referring to a tentative agreement which was hammered out in Paris at the weekend by an Iranian delegation and officials from Britain, Germany and France.

"It's very difficult to give a definition of how close we are but my feeling today is that we are pretty close to having an agreement ... let's hope for new developments in the coming hours, days," Solana said.

EU diplomats said after the Paris talks that the agreement now just needed a go-ahead from Iran's leadership."

Gulf Daily News

Gulf Daily News: "His Majesty in key Iran talks
HIS Majesty King Hamad yesterday stressed the need for Iraq to regain security and stability before reconstruction efforts can go ahead.

He was speaking as he received at Safriya Palace Iranian Foreign Minister Dr Kamal Kharrazi who conveyed greetings from President Mohammed Khatami.

His Majesty praised strong bilateral ties and the growing political and economic relations.

He also stressed the vital importance of exchanging visits and consultation to discuss regional and international issues, for regional security and stability to be to be consolidated.

Dr Kharrazi briefed His Majesty on co-operation between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency, in addition to the current talks between Tehran authorities and the European Union.

He hailed His Majesty's keenness to enhance bilateral relations.

Present were Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Shaikh Mohammed bin Mubarak Al Khalifa, Royal Court Minister Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Dr Mohammed Abdul Ghaffar, and Iranian Ambassador Mohammed Farazmand.

Also, Prime Minister Shaikh Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa yesterday received Dr Kharrazi who conveyed to him greetings from President Khatami and First Deputy President Mohammed Ridha Aref.

They reviewed bilateral co-operation in all economic fields and discussed the latest regional developments.

Earlier, Shaikh Mohammed received Dr Kharrazi and discussed bilateral relations and join co-operation."

IranMania News

IranMania News: "Other Iran economic news in brief

LONDON, Nov 9 (IranMania)
- Iran’s air fleet needs another 20,000 seats to meet both the demands of domestic and foreign passengers – Abrar Eqtesadi.

- By the end of the current Iranian year, the rate of Iran’s Foulad Khuzestan Company’s steel production is expected to hit 2 mln tons – Abrar Eqtesadi

- The construction phase of the biggest tourism complex in Iran is to start by the end of the current Iranian year in Shiraz in an area of 625 hectares. The complex is to be established by the private sector and the construction costs are estimated to exceed 500 billion tomans ($574,000,000) – Abrar Eqtesadi

- Following remarks by the head of Tehran Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Mines that private Iranian companies will continue cooperation with US businesses, the secretary general of Iran-Britain Chamber of Commerce (IBCC) disclosed that there are reports concerning plans to establish a joint chamber of commerce with the United States - ILNA

- A senior Ministry of Industries and Mines official, Golnaz Nasrollahi, who is the director general of the Ministry's Textile Department said that out-of-fashion imported fabrics and garments are sold in Iran at far below their actual rates. He added that the practice of dumping has posed serious challenge to Iran's textile industry - ISNA

- Iranian businesses have repeatedly called on the government to curb excessive imports of substandard Chinese products - ISNA

- Inexpensive sugar, which is smuggled into the country via borders with Iraq, Pakistan and the Persian Gulf, has pushed domestic products out of the market - Iran Daily

- Iran, whose imports have nearly doubled in the past two years, has emerged as South Korea's largest export market in the Middle East - Iran Daily

- Production capacity of Khuzestan steel companies stand at four million tons of broad steel sheets per annum - Iran Daily"

Daily Times - Iraq accuses Iran of supplying drugs

Daily Times - Site Edition: "Iraq accuses Iran of supplying drugs

BAGHDAD: Iraqi health officials are worried about a surge of drug addicts in Iraq and accuse neighbouring countries such as Iran of supplying narcotics through the country’s porous borders.

There are no accurate figures on the extent of the problem, but it is definitely serious, admitted Iraq’s interim Health Minister Alaeddin Abdul Sahib Adwan.

“According to the information that we have received, the problem of drug abuse is becoming endemic in Iraq, particularly among teenagers and the young,” he told a news conference in Baghdad on Tuesday.

“Iraq is surrounded by countries that have a history of producing and commercialising illegal drugs, such as Afghanistan, Iran and certain Gulf states, where at the moment the borders are badly guarded,” he said.

The known number of declared drug addicts in Iraq is 2,029, with most of them concentrated in the south and the centre, said a health ministry official dealing with the fight against drugs, Siruane Kamel.

There are 286 registered addicts in the southern province of Maysan who receive treatment at clinics, while some five percent of the province’s population use drugs, the officials said.

“In the central province of Karbala, there are 679 drug adicts who are registed at clinics and four of them have died,” he noted. Kamel blamed “the Iranians who make drugs to be used by pilgrims in the holy cities of Najaf and Karbala.” afp"

Description of Selected News

Description of Selected News: "Bush demonstrates animosity toward Iran by extending sanctions

WASHINGTON (AFP) -- President George W. Bush on Tuesday extended for one year a range of financial sanctions first imposed on Iran in November 1979, the White House announced in a statement.

"Our relations with Iran have not yet returned to normal," Bush said in a letter to the U.S. House of Representatives.

The original sanctions, imposed by then-president Jimmy Carter, froze assets of Iran's government following the November 1979 takeover of the U.S. embassy in Tehran.

Once again Bush demonstrated his animosity against the Iranian nation by extending the sanctions."

:: Xinhuanet - English ::

:: Xinhuanet - English ::: "US, Iran have no plan to meet at Iraq conference: spokesman

www.chinaview.cn 2004-11-11 04:48:29
WASHINGTON, Nov. 10 (Xinhuanet) -- US Secretary of State Colin Powell will attend the Iraq conference in Egypt later this month but there is no agenda to meet with Iranian officials who will also appear at the conference, State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said at a news briefing on Wednesday.

"Secretary Powell will go to Sham el-Sheikh, Egypt to participate in the expanded regional conference that is being heldNovember 22nd and 23rd, hosted by the government of Egypt, to discuss promoting security and stability in Iraq and Iraq's democratic transition," Boucher said.

Boucher said the United States and Iran will have a chance to listen to the views of each other at the conference but there is no agenda to have a meeting.

"There is no particular meeting set up with the Iranians. Thereis no agenda for a meeting with the Iranians," Boucher said.

"It is a chance to attend the same meeting and hear directly what they have to say, and for them to hear what we have to say. That happens from time to time. I would not make this event in anyway particularly different from some of the others that have happened before," Boucher said.

The United States has threatened to refer Iran's nuclear program issue to the United Nations Security Council for international sanctions, but Iran has insisted that its nuclear programs are for civil purposes only."

SignOnSanDiego.com > News > World -- Iran says it's capable of mass producing Shahab-3 missile

SignOnSanDiego.com > News > World -- Iran says it's capable of mass producing Shahab-3 missile: "Iran says it's capable of mass producing Shahab-3 missile

By Ali Akbar Dareini
ASSOCIATED PRESS
5:01 p.m. November 9, 2004
TEHRAN, Iran – Iran said Tuesday it can mass produce a missile capable of carrying a nuclear warhead and reaching Israel and U.S. forces in the Middle East.

"We have reached a point in the field of producing the Shahab-3 missile that we are able to mass produce," Defense Minister Ali Shamkhani told state-run television Tuesday.

Iran says it has developed the missile in response to efforts by arch-foe, Israel, to upgrade its own missile system.

Shamkani's comments about the Shahab-3 follow lengthy discussions between Britain, France and Germany over Tehran's contentious nuclear program.

The United States wants Iran dragged before the U.N. Security Council to face sanctions, claiming the Persian state is trying to build nuclear weapons. Iran denies the claims, saying instead its nuclear program is peaceful and aimed at generating energy.

The missile, whose name "Shahab" means shooting star in Farsi, has a range of about 800 miles and is capable of reaching Israel and various U.S. military bases in the region.

Iran last successfully tested the medium-range missile in 2002 before equipping its elite Revolutionary Guards with it in July 2003.

In August, Iran tested a new version of the Shahab-3. Shamkhani said at the time that Iran was trying to improve the range and accuracy of the missile in response to efforts by Israel to upgrade its missile system.

Last month, former president Hashemi Rafsanjani said Iran's missiles now have a range of more than 1,200 miles, a substantial extension of their previously declared range.

Shamkhani didn't say Tuesday which type of Shahab-3 Iran was able to mass produce, but said Iran was able to meet all its armed force's needs.

Shamkhani, however, rejected reports that Iran was seeking to produce a long-range Shahab-4 with a range of more than 2,500 miles.

Israel and the United States have jointly developed the Arrow anti-ballistic missile system in response to Shahab-3's threat. "

Yahoo! News - WARGAMING IRAN - Mines in Baltimore Harbor

Yahoo! News - WARGAMING IRAN: "WARGAMING IRAN

By William F. Buckley Jr.
If you can do it, forget Fallujah for just a minute. Think Iran (never mind its negotiations with the Europeans). A productive way to do this is to read James Fallows in the current issue of The Atlantic Monthly. The title of the article is, "Will Iran Be Next?" The subtitle gives away the conclusions, and so will here be suppressed.

Not so the structure of Mr. Fallows' extraordinarily ingenious exploration of the challenge. We all know that "war games" are conducted at many levels. At the most rudimentary level, you and your constant companion can have agreed to basic rules: You will agree to act as Peerless Leader Kim Jong Il, your partner as president of the United States. Peerless Leader moves aggressively, the president counters the move; the colloquy proceeds, and in the end -- something happens, as in chess.

Imagine a war game in which there are seven actors, each one of them hugely experienced in government, whether as sometime head of the CIA (news - web sites), national security adviser to the president, U.S. representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency, secretary of defense, and so on.

The meeting among these people has the objective of formulating a recommendation to the president on how to cope with the advances in Iran toward aggressive nuclear armament. The plot thickens at a great and readable pace.

Assumptions are sought and accepted. The question was asked: "Should Iran be likened to Saddam Hussein (news - web sites)'s Iraq (news - web sites), in whose possession nuclear weapons would pose an unacceptable threat, or to Pakistan, India, or even North Korea (news - web sites), whose nuclear ambitions the United States regrets but has decided to live with for now?" The immediate answer: The United States cannot "tolerate Iran's emergence as a nuclear power."

Here is another postulate in the war game. "At some point, relatively soon, Iran will have an arsenal that no outsiders can destroy, and America will not know in advance when that point has arrived."

Think back, as everyone in the room did, to Israel in 1981, when Menachem Begin sent planes to destroy the nuclear reactor Saddam Hussein was building at Osirak. That set back Saddam's nuclear program what proved to be indefinitely. Why couldn't Israel do the same thing against Iran?

But in the current scenario, Israel doesn't know where exactly the nuclear laboratories are, any more than we do. Add to that, the problem of Israel's military in getting to those we reasonably suspect as warranting destruction. "Israeli planes would have to fly over Saudi Arabia and Jordan, probably a casus belli in itself given current political conditions; or over Turkey, also a problem; or over American-controlled Iraq," which would require (and signal) U.S. approval of the mission. Add this: There isn't any way Israeli air demolitionists could get back from their mission. The targets are

So, the war-gamers conclude, a strike would need to be undertaken by the United States. Here three stages are envisioned. The first, a bombing mission targeting Revolutionary Guard concentrations. That, actually, is easy to do, a 24-hour assignment using existing resources.

Next in gravity would be taking on the destruction of known and likely nuclear sites. To do this comprehensively would mean targeting 350 points, and to execute such an operation would take days.

To move on to Stage 3, a regime change, we would have to use U.S. ground troops. And to do either the second or the third stage, you would need air bases far beyond anything now available. "Compared with Iraq, Iran has three times the population, four times the land area, and five times the problems," one gamesman pointed out.

Pause and think retrogressively. "About Iran's intentions there is no disagreement. Iran is trying to develop nuclear weapons, and unless its policy is changed by the incentives it is offered or the warnings it receives, it will succeed."

Moreover, if we undertook preliminary military moves, what makes us certain that the Iranians would sit still for it? "'We never "red-celled" the enemy in this exercise' (that is, let him have the first move) (one participant warned). 'What if they try to pre-empt us? What if we threaten them, and the next day we find mines in Baltimore Harbor and the Golden Gate, with a warning that there will be more?'"

Resolved: (1) Israel can't handle the challenge. (2) The U.S. can't abjure military action -- there must be the threat that we will act. (3) Gaining time does not necessarily enhance our leverage.

So? What happens is going to depend on a quick judgment by the president of the United States. What we can learn from Iraq is that he needs to be counseled on the consequences of alternative actions. He needs to avoid such as what we are contending with in Iraq."

AP Wire | 11/10/2004 | Powell Says He Will Meet With Iranians

AP Wire | 11/10/2004 | Powell Says He Will Meet With Iranians: "Powell Says He Will Meet With Iranians

E.EDUARDO CASTILLO

Associated Press


MEXICO CITY - The United States expects to sit down with Iran at an international conference to discuss stability in Iraq, U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell said Tuesday. Washington and Tehran have no diplomatic relations.

The international conference, scheduled to be held in the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheik on Nov. 22-23, will include Middle Eastern states and the powerful Group of Eight industrial nations. They are expected to throw their support behind the Iraqi interim government's efforts toward stabilizing the country.

China, the United Nations, the Arab League, the Organization of Islamic Conference and the European Union are also expected to participate.

Powell said Tuesday he believed the Iranians were planning to attend.

"Since we'll all be at the same conference, I expect that I would be talking to everybody at that conference, to include the Iranians and Syrians and others, just as I have done in the past," he told a news conference in Mexico City, where he met with his Mexican counterpart, Luis Ernesto Derbez.

Powell said he didn't plan to hold separate talks with Iran.

"We will have an opportunity to be together and talk, but we haven't arranged any particular meetings," he said. "Nothing's been set up, therefor, there is no agenda to discuss here."

President Bush's administration has accused Iran of harboring top al-Qaida members and developing an illicit weapons programs.

The United States broke off formal diplomatic relations with Iran after militants stormed the U.S. Embassy Tehran in 1979 and held 52 Americans hostage for 444 days."

Reuters | Latest Financial News / Full News Coverage

Reuters | Latest Financial News / Full News Coverage: "Iran issues nuclear warning
Wed 10 November, 2004 12:47

By Paul Hughes

TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran will pull out of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and develop its atomic programme in secret if Western nations threaten or put pressure on Tehran, a senior Iran diplomat has been quoted as saying.

Iranian government officials have in the past repeatedly said Tehran had no intention of following North Korea's example of withdrawing from the NPT.

Diplomats expect Iran to announce shortly that it has agreed to suspend nuclear fuel cycle activities which could be used to make bomb material as part of a deal with the European Union to avoid referral to the U.N. Security Council.

But Sirus Naseri, a member of the Iranian negotiating team in the talks with the EU, warned Iran -- which says its atomic programme is strictly for civilian use -- could take drastic steps if the talks did not proceed as Tehran wants.

"If they start to pressure or threaten us, then we will put aside the treaty and go underground," the semi-official Mehr news agency quoted him as saying on Wednesday.

"In that case, after one or two years, America and the EU will send mediators to talk to us and find a solution," he said.

Iran says it has the right as an NPT signatory to develop an atomic programme to generate electricity to meet booming demand.

But Washington and Israel say Tehran's real ambition is to make nuclear weapons and want it to scrap activities that could be used to make bomb-grade material, such as uranium enrichment.

The EU says that if Iran scraps its enrichment facilities it will guarantee a supply of fuel for its reactors.

SUPENSION YES, CESSATION NO

But Naseri said Iran "will never rely on other countries to supply us with the nuclear fuel, which means we will definitely keep our enrichment programme."

"We will never accept cessation (of enrichment). This issue has been removed from the talks' agenda," he added.

He said a preliminary deal reached during talks with the EU last weekend would ease international pressure on Iran, which faces possible U.N. Security Council sanctions should it fail to suspend uranium enrichment and fuel reprocessing activities.

"This agreement will provide us with a peaceful period, which we needed," he said.

"Acting properly and reaching an understanding with the EU ... will strengthen Iran's international status. Otherwise we would be put in a difficult situation," he said.

But he said Iran would resume enrichment if it felt the EU was dragging its feet on a final settlement. And he said Iran could use the suspension time to review and perfect its nuclear technology.

"Normally when you resume an activity it will be of a higher quality than before," he said.

His comments are likely to fuel concerns in Washington that Iran is using its negotiations with the EU to buy time and ease international pressure while continuing to develop its atomic programme in secret.

But Naseri said Washington had the final say on the EU deal.

"We know that the main party, absent in the talks, is America ... we know that the EU must coordinate with America and they themselves are not the decision-makers," he said.

He said Iran was prepared to talk to Washington directly if it treated Tehran as an equal.

"If one day America understands that we are at the same level, then we can hold direct talks with America. But right now, we do not see America having such an attitude," he said."

Russian Information Agency Novosti

Russian Information Agency Novosti: "RUSSIA PLAYS MAJOR ROLE IN IRAN'S FOREIGN POLICY


TEHRAN, November 10 (RIA Novosti's Nikolai Terekhov) - "Russia plays an important role in Iran's foreign policy, and Tehran has always sought strategic and all-round ties with the Russian Federation," Iranian Vice President Reza Aref said at a meeting with St Petersburg Governor Valentina Matviyenko, reports the president's administration.

"By removing certain obstacles and defining their private sectors' realistic potentials the two countries will intensify bilateral cooperation," said Mr Aref.

The Iranian government's special headquarters that handle Russian-Iranian trade and economic relations demonstrates Tehran's interest in promoting bilateral ties, according to Mr Aref.

Mr Aref expressed hope that trade turnover between Russia and Iran would exceed $5 billion in the future through employing their potentials and exchanging expertise.

Mr Aref said Petersburg was a major cultural and economic centre in Russia and urged more intensive contacts between Russian and Iranian regions, above all, in the trade, scientific and cultural spheres.

On Wednesday, Ms Matviyenko is expected to hold meetings with the authorities of Isfaghan, Petersburg's twin town."

IranMTofiqi confers with Haddad-Adel

IranMania News: "Tofiqi confers with Haddad-Adel

Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - ©2004 IranMania.com
LONDON, Nov 10 (IranMania) - Iranian Minister of science, research and technology Jafar Tofiqi Tuesday in a meeting with parliament speaker, Gholamali Haddad-Adel briefed him on the follow-up in the case related to the unrest in the Science and Technology University last week.

Also present in the meeting were members of the parliament fact-finding team probing the incident, Fars News Agency reported.

Tofiqi told the news agency that the Ministry has taken charge of the case and "our efforts are now focused on identifying and punishing the culprits."

Classes, which had been boycotted, have now resumed, he added. The university's scientific board said Sunday they would not attend classes until the results of a probe into the unrest is announced and measures taken to respect the dignity and sanctity of the university.

The Minister said the offenders (a group of Basij students who took the university chancellor hostage and physically assaulted him) had been identified and the case is under investigation by the disciplinary committee set up at the university.

Meanwhile, the Association of University Graduates of Islamic Iran (Advar-e Tahkim-e Vahdat) condemned the attack on the chancellor of the university, Dr. Mohammad Taqi Salehi.

In a statement issued Monday, the association charged that a peculiar mentality is taking root inside the country, which is of the opinion that freethinking, and logical approaches are the biggest threat to its dominant and attitude.

That is why, it added, it has kept assaulting universities and attacking academicians in a bid to take revenge.

In related news, the Union of Islamic Associations of Iranian University Students in Europe Monday condemned violation of university sanctity including the recent events in Science and Technology University.

In a statement, the union said assaulting a chancellor who has been elected by the professors is not an insult to one professor or a chancellor alone.

A group of hard-line students opposed to a question-answer session with former Foreign Minister, Ebrahim Yazdi and former deputy interior minister, Mostafa Tajzadeh at the university on November 2 assaulted Salehi and took him hostage for three hours."

Germany rules out war against Iran -

Germany rules out war against Iran -: "Germany rules out war against Iran
11/10/2004 8:30:00 AM GMT

German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer said that war is not an option against Iran.

German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer said on Wednesday that war is not an option against Iran and no one expects the standoff over Iran's nuclear program to lead to an "Iraq-like confrontation."

However, Fischer was quoted by Germany's Stern magazine as saying that there were "deep concerns" about Iran's nuclear and missile programs, adding that the possession of nuclear weapons would pose a real threat to the region and Europe.

"I don't see that we're immediately heading for an Iraq-like confrontation," Fischer said. "I believe that it's clear to all parties involved that war is not an option."

Fischer also refused backing Iranian opposition groups to topple Iran’s current leadership. “We are placing emphasis on the political process,” said Fischer.

Earlier this week, British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw has also excluded that the United States was preparing to resolve the standoff with military force.

The U.S. accuses Iran of covertly developing nuclear weapons and wants Tehran’s nuclear file to be referred to the UN Security Council for possible sanctions.

The Islamic republic denies the U.S. allegations and maintains that its program is mainly aimed at the peaceful generation of electricity and insists on its right to enrich uranium under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

"A military nuclearization of Iran would have unforeseen consequences in one of the most dangerous regions of the world. That would not only threaten Israel but also Europe," Fischer said.

The EU “Big Trio” warned Iran that it might face UN Security Council sanctions if it fails to suspend all activities related to the enrichment of uranium by a November 25 deadline set by the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency.

The Europeans are offering Iran a deal under which the Islamic republic would freeze its uranium enrichment program for an indefinite period, while negotiating a larger package of economic and political incentives.

But the U.S. remains deeply skeptical over the EU-Iranian nuclear deal. American officials claim that Tehran is only using the negotiations with the Europeans to buy time in order to develop atomic weapons.

Jeffrey Gedmin, head of the U.S. Aspen Institute in Berlin, which has close links to the American government, describes the EU Big Three’s initiative as an “axis of weakness.”

“In truth, Germany’s Iran policy has been bankrupt from nearly day one,” said Gedmin.

“In 1999 the EU changed the name of the policy to ’Constructive Dialogue’ ... Europe is nice to the mullahs, and when this fails, well, Europe tries to be a little nicer,” he said, adding: “Germany has been allergic even to the idea of stepped up political pressure.”"