The European Union issued a warning to Iran to stop it’s nuclear weapons program:
VIENNA (AP)–European Union representatives warned Iran Saturday that it has less than two weeks to freeze any nuclear work that could be used to make an atomic weapon. Otherwise Iran faces being referred to the U.N. Security Council for sanctions.
The E.U. representatives – diplomats from E.U. countries accredited to the International Atomic Energy Agency – said talks will begin Monday in Vienna among members of the 35-nation IAEA board of governors with a goal of finding consensus on referral to the Security Council.
The likelihood of referral grew after an IAEA report revealed Friday that Tehran had pumped out about seven tons of the gas it needs for uranium enrichment since restarting the process last month.
And as a Sept. 19 IAEA board meeting grows closer, ministers – including U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and E.U. counterparts from France, Germany and the U.K. – will likely get involved in drafting the language of a resolution demanding the Security Council deal with Iran’s refusal to stop uranium conversion, a precursor to uranium enrichment, diplomats said.
The diplomats, who demanded anonymity because they are not authorized to discuss the Iran game plan with the media, said Tehran still could avoid referral by reimposing a freeze on such activities before the board meeting.
That appeared unlikely, however.
I’m sure your guessing that Iran is now shaking in it’s boots, I mean a warning from Europe has to just scare the bejesus out of them right? (Sarcasm off)
Iran said Sunday that it won’t stop uranium reprocessing work, rejecting a European threat that Tehran had less than two weeks to freeze uranium conversion or face referral to the UN Security Council for possible sanctions.
Iran resumed uranium reporcessing activities at its Uranium Conversion Facility in Isfahan last month after it rejected a European package of proposals. That package had called on Iran to permanently stop its uranium enrichment program in return for a supply of nuclear fuel and economic incentives.
Iran says it won’t give up uranium enrichment, a right granted to it under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
Revolutionary Guard and the Secretary of the regime’s high council of security said today in an interview with the IRI Television that: “Expecting us to stop our nuclear centrifuges is simply inappropriate and these Europeans and other major world powers (China and Russia) better not make the mistake of using the big stick of the U.N.’s Security Council.”
And this from the USA Today:
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) ? Iran will continue uranium reprocessing despite Europe’s threat to refer it to the U.N. Security Council for possible sanctions if it does not freeze the work within two weeks, a Foreign Ministry official said Sunday.
…International attention is focussed on the Uranium Conversion Facility in Isfahan in central Iran, where Tehran last month resumed activities related to the conversion of uranium concentrate ore ? known as yellowcake ? into hexaflouride gas, the feedstock for enrichment.
Uranium enrichment is an activity of even higher concern for the international community. Enriched to a low level, uranium can be used to produce nuclear fuel used to generate electricity. Further enrichment makes it suitable for use in nuclear weapons.
“The issue of Isfahan is a thing of the past,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told reporters Sunday. “The era of threats to force Iran to give up its rights is over. We have said it and say it again, that threat and resorting to two-sided language won’t help Europe.”
Iran says it will not restart uranium enrichment for now in nearby Natanz, where it was suspended in 2003 under a deal with Europeans, but insists it will never again suspend uranium conversion in Isfahan.
…Britain, Germany and France, negotiating on behalf of the 25-nation European Union, have said they may get involved in drafting the language of a resolution demanding Iran be referred to the Security Council if it does not stop uranium conversion in Isfahan by the Sept. 19 IAEA board meeting.
Uh oh, now THAT must scare them, the UN demanding Iran stop or else!
What a waste. The whole world knows the UN has no bite to it’s bark. They can continue demanding for the next 12 years, just as they did with Iraq, and nothing will come of it because the whole world nows they won’t do a damn thing about it if Iran doesn’t back down.
The only reason Iraq was forced to comply with its cease fire agreement was because the US invaded, against the objections of most in the EU. It’s seems ludicrous to me that the UN or the EU actually believes they can force Iran to do a damn thing. Iran know’s they are big pussies and will keep bullying them…until it’s too late and they build the bomb.
To make matters worse, there is growing evidence Russian and China may back Iran:
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia opposes reporting Iran to the U.N. Security Council over its nuclear programme, a senior diplomat was quoted as saying on Monday.
U.S. and European Union officials have warned they will push for Iran’s nuclear case to be sent to the Security Council — which could impose sanctions — if Tehran does not halt all nuclear fuel work and resume negotiations with the EU.
“Moscow sees no reason why the question of Iran’s nuclear programme should be sent to the U.N. (Security Council)…” Alexander Yakovenko, a deputy foreign minister, told Interfax news agency.
Aug. 18 (Bloomberg) — Iran received a military delegation from China, paving the way for cooperation in the defense field, Iran’s Mehr News agency reported, citing Brigadier General Nasser Mohammadi Far, the commander of the Iranian army’s ground forces.
The Chinese delegation is in Iran for talks on “developing military relations, deepening bilateral ties and paving the way for military cooperation,” the state-run Iranian news agency said. The press office of China’s Ministry of Defense in Beijing declined to comment on the delegation’s visit.
“Our mutual enemies possess advanced military technology, and undoubtedly they would rely on this technology in any possible future wars,” Mehr News quoted Mohammadi Far as saying. “Therefore, it seems necessary that both Iran and China upgrade their defense and military technology.”
China is Iran’s third-largest export market for crude oil, and ties between the two countries have strengthened in recent years as Iran started granting stakes in the development of its oil and gas fields. Iran, under U.S. economic sanctions and at odds with both the U.S. and the Europe Union over its nuclear program, is increasingly turning to the East for new markets, opening its economy in return.
Add that together with this:
Nearly 10,000 troops are to take part in unprecedented joint military exercises by China and Russia this month aimed at strengthening ties between the armed forces of two powers that were once bitter foes.
Chinese state media said yesterday the ?Peace Mission 2005? exercises would be held from August 18-25 in and around the Russian far eastern port of Vladivostok and the Chinese coastal province of Shandong.
The scale of the exercises, which will involve land, air, naval, paratroop and marine forces, underlines the determination of Beijing and Moscow to expand a military relationship that has blossomed over the past 15 years.
Russia is now China’s leading source of high-technology weaponry, while the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has become an important source of foreign currency for the crumbling Russian military industrial complex. ?The drills mainly aim to deepen Sino-Russian mutual trust, promote mutual friendship and enhance the co-operation and co-ordination of the two armed forces in the areas of defence and security,? China’s official Xinhua news agency said.
And things start to look a bit scary.
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