Thursday, January 20, 2005

Aljazeera.Net - Rice Strategy on Iran

Aljazeera.Net - Rice seeks unity against Iran, N Korea: "Strategy on Iran

Concerning Iran, which has been under US sanctions since 1979, Rice acknowledged that Washington had little leverage but was working with Britain, France and Germany to develop a strategy to hold Tehran accountable.

"I would take, as a first step, that if the Iranians do not show that they're going to live up to their international obligations that we refer them to the Security Council," she said, adding that "at some point that may be exactly where we need to go".

What Washington is saying is, "Iran has to be held to account for its international obligations", she added.

The US goal "is to have a regime in Iran that is responsive to concerns that we have about Iran's policies, which are 180 degrees to our own interest at this point", she said.

"That means the regime would have to deal with its nuclear weapons obligations, deal with the fact that there are al-Qaida leaders who have been there, deal with the fact that they're supporting Hizb Allah and terrorism and Palestinian rejectionists against the Middle East peace process," she said.

Concerning Tehran's nuclear aspirations, Rice said: "The world is sending a message to Iran that Iran cannot be a legitimate participant in the international system, international politics and pursue a nuclear weapon."
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