Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said here on Saturday that his country will not be pushed by sanctions to suspend work on its disputed nuclear program. ” … without even retreating one step or giving in to sanctions, threats and the psychological war of Islamic Iran’s enemies, we will move on the path of (nuclear) progress,” Ahmadinejad said.
Senior officials from the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany met in Berlin on Thursday to discuss Iran’s refusal to halt its uranium enrichment work, as demanded by the UN Security Council.
Some diplomats said the Americans had been eager to discuss possible language for a new sanctions resolution during the Berlin talks.
The United Nations has imposed two sets of sanctions on Iran since December over its refusal to freeze enrichment – a vital process for Iran for producing fuel for its power plants.
“We are at the last stage of becoming ‘nuclearized’ and nuclearization means proving that Iran is worthy of becoming a free, independent and honorable model for other nations,” Ahmadinejad told a group of students.
Iran has been pressing ahead with plans to expand its nuclear work to produce its own fuel for a planned network of atomic power plants.
Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei has also vowed that Iran would never retreat along the nuclear path.
Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani also stressed on Friday that Tehran would not stop its atomic activities and said Western powers should not “waste their time”.
Larijani is expected to meet the European Union Foreign Policy chief Javier Solana later in May to resume talks on Iran’s nuclear program though the exact place and date have not been announced yet.