Iran's nuclear progress unstoppable - Ahmadinejad

Other News Materials 4 October 2007 21:13

( RIA Novosti ) - No force in the world can halt Iran's progress in the nuclear realm, the president of the Islamic Republic said Thursday.

"Enemies are in no position to harm the cause of the [Islamic] revolution," Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said, adding that "some enemies" are trying to weaken the country's economy with trade and economic sanctions.

But Iran is prepared to overcome all difficulties, and nothing will prevent its triumph, he said.

The chief of the UN nuclear watchdog said earlier Thursday that the international community should give Iran more time to show its nuclear program is peaceful.

"This situation, which might continue for two or three months, is an investment in peace," Mohamed ElBaradei, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, said in an interview with the Egyptian daily al-Ahram.

On Wednesday, European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana said he plans to meet with Iran's top nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani in the near future.

Speaking to EU lawmakers at the European Parliament, Solana said it is necessary to give Iran a signal because time is limited and reiterated his hope that the dispute over Iran's nuclear issue could be resolved by diplomatic means.

In mid-September the six countries involved in talks to persuade Iran to drop uranium enrichment delayed a vote on a new set of sanctions against the Islamic Republic by November. The vote was postponed pending reports from the IAEA and Solana.

The six nations involved in talks are the five permanent Security Council members: China, the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom and France plus Germany.

The U.S. and France have urged tougher penalties for Iran, which is suspected of pursuing a covert nuclear weapons program. Tehran insists it needs its own nuclear fuel for power generation and wants to be independent from foreign supplies.

Iran has defied three consecutive UN resolutions against its nuclear program since last year and has called two previously-imposed rounds of sanctions illegal.

However, since early-summer talks between Larijani and ElBaradei, Tehran has allowed two inspections of its 40-MW heavy water nuclear reactor in Arak, potentially capable of producing weapons-grade plutonium. Permission was given despite Iran's refusal to grant access to the site following the second set of sanctions in March.