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Home > News > PTI

IAEA meeting could vote against Iran: US

October 21, 2005 22:44 IST

Accusing Iran of being a leading supporter and funder of major terrorist groups in the Middle East, the United States Friday said November's International Atomic Energy Agency meeting could vote against Tehran if it did not get back to the negotiating table with European countries by then.

"There is still a possibility for Iran to sit down with European countries to seek a diplomatic solution to this very important problem," visiting United States Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns said at a joint press conference with Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran in response to questions.

"Iran is a country, most of the world believes, that is trying to create a nuclear weapons future. It is also a country, which is a leading supporter and funder of major terrorist groups in the Middle East -- groups that are active in Israel, Palestinian territories and Lebanon. As a country devoted to counter-terrorism, we are extremely concerned about Iranian behaviour," he said.

He said the best way forward for Iran was negotiations. "If Iran does not come to negotiations, then there is every reason to believe that there will be a vote in the IAEA Board of Governors meeting on November 24," he said.

He claimed that a majority view already existed in countries from Africa, Asia, Latin America, Europe and North America, which have found Iran not to be in compliance with Non-Proliferation Treaty obligations.

Burns said there was not a single country in the world, which wanted to see Iran acquiring nuclear weapons. He contended that in September's vote at the IAEA, Russia, China, Brazil and South Africa abstained, but had not supported Iran. He said, "Iran must feel fairly isolated."

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