Iran is threatening the United States with "harm and pain" for bringing its case against Tehran's nuclear program to the United Nations Security Council.
An Iranian statement to the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna says Washington is susceptible to the same harm and pain that it inflicts. Some diplomats say the Iranian statement is seen as a veiled threat by oil-rich Iran to interrupt oil supplies to the West.
Earlier Wednesday, U.S. diplomats at the same meeting told the IAEA board that the time has come for the Security Council to take action against Iran, which resumed enriching uranium last month over IAEA objections.
Both the United States and the European Union say Iran has not been forthright about its nuclear ambitions. The Bush administration has accused Tehran of secret efforts to build an atomic bomb. Iran says its nuclear program is aimed at developing electricity.
The Vienna meeting of the 35-nation IAEA board is the last procedural step before the Security Council can begin considering possible sanctions against Iran for allegedly violating the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
In Iran today, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said his nation is making full use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. He said the world will have to yield to Iran's decision.
Tuesday, Vice President Dick Cheney warned of "meaningful consequences" for Tehran if its alleged pursuit of an atomic bomb continues.