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Iran's Foreign Minister Downplays Washington's Warning

  • VOA News

Iran's foreign minister downplayed US Vice President Dick Cheney's warning that Washington would consider all options in its efforts to prevent Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki today Saturday told reporters that the US is not in a position to take any military action.

Earlier today Saturday, Cheney said Washington wants to pursue a diplomatic approach to persuade Iran to abandon its nuclear program. But, in Cheney's words, "all options are still on the table."

Mottaki said Iran also wants to reach a solution to the impasse through negotiations and dialogue.

Cheney's comments came during a news conference with Australian Prime Minister John Howard in Sydney on Saturday.

The United States and other major powers allege Iran is trying to build nuclear weapons, a charge Iran denies.

The vice-president said the US government has worked with Europeans and the United Nations to persuade Iran to give up its nuclear program.

On Friday, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said she believes a diplomatic solution could succeed if the international community remains unified in confronting Iran.

The five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany will meet Monday in London to discuss Tehran's refusal to stop enriching uranium.

Earlier in the week, the International Atomic Energy Agency reported that Iran had expanded its uranium enrichment activity, despite a UN Security Council order to stop enrichment.

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