Britain’s Foreign Secretary David Miliband stressed Iran’s inalienable right to use nuclear technology. Miliband made the remarks in a meeting with his Iranian counterpart Manouchehr Mottaki on the sidelines of the 62nd United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York, a statement released by the Foreign Ministry’s Information and Press Bureau said.
During the meeting, Miliband noted the meeting of the Group 5+1 – the five permanent UN Security Council members (the US, Britain, France, Russia and China) plus Germany – in Washington, and said, “Use of nuclear energy is Iran’s inalienable right.”
“In order to support the recent cooperation between the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Iran, we will wait until this November to see the reports by (the IAEA Director General Mohamed) ElBaradei and (EU foreign policy chief Javier) Solana on the trend of talks,” he added.
He further briefed Mottaki about his country’s policies on Afghanistan and Iraq, and described the withdrawal of the British troops in the Iraqi city of Basra as a part of the policies of the new British government.
For his part, the Iranian foreign minister noted the regional issues, and pointed out that the West has pursued a wrong image in dealing with Iraq and Afghanistan.
“Correction of the wrong policies that the Untied States and the previous British government have pursued is the solution to the problem in Iraq and the region,” he said.
Mottaki further elaborated on the current conditions in Afghanistan, and said, “Britain is responsible for the anti-drug campaign in Afghanistan, but we are witnessing that production and plantation of illicit drugs is on the increase in that country.”
He also pointed to the recent meeting between senior British officials and the Taliban leaders in Musa Ghaleh in Afghanistan, and stressed, “Such measures are the continuation of the wrong policies which cause reinvigoration of the Taliban and undermining of the popular government of Afghanistan.”
Mottaki also described Iran’s role in the region as positive, and reminded that the Islamic Republic is the only country in the region which has voiced full support for the popular governments in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Elsewhere in the same meeting, he referred to the recent cooperation between Iran and the IAEA, and viewed international support for the UN nuclear watchdog as the proper way to end the nuclear standoff between Tehran and the West, underlining that the Islamic Republic believes continued talks between Iran and the IAEA is the only solution to the problem.