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Iran's comparison of N-programme with India outrageous: US
January 20, 2006 20:00 IST
Terming as "outrageous" Iran's comparison of its nuclear programme with India, the United States Friday said Tehran needs to face the "penalty" as it had crossed "so many international red lines".
Visiting US Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns said the Iran nuclear issue should be referred to the United Nations Security Council even as India maintained that it would prefer the matter to be resolved within the purview of International Atomic Energy Agency.
"The US feels that there should be a vote on Iran at the IAEA Board of Governors meeting on February 2 and the matter should be referred to the Security Council," Burns said at a joint press conference in New Delhi with Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran after their two-day talks on various issues, including that of Iran crisis.
Iran has "crossed so many international red lines and it has to know that there are going to be a penalty to be paid," he said.
Burns said Russia, China and the EU-3 (Germany, UK and France) also shared the view that Iran had "crossed the line it should not have crossed" although the views of all these countries were not identical to that of the US on the issue.
Responding to a question about Iran's top leader Ali Larijani recently comparing India's nuclear programme with that of Tehran, the US official rubbished it. "Everyone is surprised by the remark. It is outrageous," he said.