Iran wants nuclear weapons to destroy others: Bush

March 21st, 2008 - 11:24 pm ICT by admin  

Washington, March 21 (DPA) US President George W. Bush charged that Iran has proclaimed its intention to destroy other countries with nuclear weapons, in comments that escalate the tone of the international debate and appear to have no base in past statements by Iran. In an interview with Voice of America Thursday, Bush urged the people of Iran to understand that their own government was responsible for Iran’s isolation because of its foreign policy decisions - “such as announcing they want to destroy countries with a nuclear weapon”.

“It is irresponsible remarks like that which cause great credibility loss with the Iranian government, the actions of which are affecting the country,” Bush said.

The interview with the US broadcaster was granted on Iran’s Nowruz holiday, or New Year, and Bush sent greetings to the people of Iran on the occasion.

Just late last year, US intelligence officials concluded that Iran had stopped its weapons programme.

In a Washington Post story Friday, experts said there is no record of Iran declaring its intention to destroy countries with nuclear weapons.

Just days ago, Republican presidential nominee John McCain misstated Iran’s involvement with Al Qaeda while visiting Jordan, saying that it was training Al Qaeda terrorists.

His senate colleague Joseph Lieberman, who was travelling with him, corrected his mistake.

The UN Security Council has passed a series of increasingly tough sanctions to force Iran to stop its uranium enrichment programme, which can produce weapons-grade material.

Iran has refused to stop enrichment or to accept the offer of supplies of enriched uranium from Russia. Iran denies any intentions of producing nuclear weapons but says it wants to build up its network of nuclear power plants to produce much-needed electricity.

Bush said he supports Iran’s peaceful nuclear programme.

Earlier this week, the US and Israel chastised Switzerland for sealing a huge gas deal with Iran estimated at $30 billion.

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