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India opposes military or economic force against Iran
May 29, 2007 15:37 IST
As the standoff between Iran and the West continues over the former's controversial nuclear programme, India on Tuesday voiced strong opposition to any "threat or implied threat" of use of military or economic force against Tehran, saying it will not yield any positive results.
External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee told a meeting of the 45-nation Asia Europe Meeting in Hamburg in Germany that Iran "must be engaged purposefully and candidly" as "threats against or denigration of the country will not work."
He, however, underlined that Iran has to be mindful of its international obligations.
"Progress on the issues that concern us (with regard to Iran) will not be possible by the use or the threat of use of force or sanctions," Mukherjee said making an intervention at the ASEM amid looming possibility of fresh UN sanctions against Iran.
He emphasised that only engagement will "enable us to see that Iran views its international obligations as being in its pragmatic self-interest."
Hailing Iran as a country with tremendous natural and human resources, Mukherjee said development of these resources will make the Persian nation a factor for regional security and not "the threat or the implied threat of use of military or economic force."
Mukherjee's remarks came amid Iran's consistent refusal to suspend its nuclear enrichment programme, most recently documented in a report by the UN nuclear watchdog, International Atomic Energy Agency, that was sent to the UN Security Council, which has set the stage for further sanctions against Tehran.