Ahmadinejad offers nuclear talks, but no compromise
Iran is ready to hold nuclear talks with world powers but will not make compromises, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Tuesday, DPA reported.
"As I said before, we are ready to have nuclear talks with the world powers and reach an understanding," Ahmadinejad said in a press conference in Tehran.
"But as I also said before, the nuclear issue is like a train which has no brakes and no reverse gear, which means that there will be no compromise," he added.
The president said the technical aspects of the country's nuclear programme were "moving forward with high speed."
"The centrifuges are working, we even have (uranium enrichment at) 20 per cent (level) and we continue our research, and all that by local experts," he said.
He also stressed that Iran was working according to international regulations and laws and was cooperating fully with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
"As far as the political aspect is concerned, we have a problem because the other side is looking for excuses to harm the Iranian image by claiming that we are after making an atomic bomb, which is not the case," the president said.
The IAEA on Monday said Iran appeared to have been developing atomic weapons until recently. It also urged the country to finally answer questions about various research and development projects which the Vienna-based nuclear agency says has little other uses than for military aims.
The previous round of talks between Iran and Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United States was held in January in Istanbul but ended without tangible results.
Tehran says that if the world powers acknowledge Iran's right to pursue a civilian nuclear programmes, then Iran would engage in political cooperation.
In his press conference Tuesday, Ahmadinejad also repeated his view that the majority of Middle Eastern nations do not want Israel's existence in the region to continue, likening its "Zionist regime" to a "cancerous tumour" that should be removed.