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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Khatami asks Europe to fulfill its nuclear pledges to Iran

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Tehran, Jan 12, IRNA -- President Mohammad Khatami on Monday urged 
Europe to honor its `commitments` toward Iran, made during a landmark 
visit of three key European foreign ministers to Tehran in October. 
"Tehran expects its European friends to honor their commitments 
and accords," he said in a meeting with EU foreign policy chief Javier
Solana here. 
Iran apparently received assurances from Europe during the visit 
of British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw and his French and German 
counterparts Dominique de Villepin and Joschka Fischer respectively to
Tehran in October to sign to an unfettered inspections of its nuclear 
facilities and suspend uranium enrichment. 
Khatami said, "We are not worried about the world knowing what we 
are doing. However, we expect that the others also fulfill their 
pledges." 
Tehran is under a de facto nuclear embargo, which bans the sale of
nuclear know-how, including goods with double use, to the Islamic 
Republic. 
Khatami described the existing `understanding and interaction` 
between Iran and Europe a `successful and effective experience`, but 
chided the European Union for voting the Islamic Republic in breach 
of human rights. 
The human rights situation in Iran is not comparable to that in 
many countries and foreign pressures in this regard on Tehran are 
unjust, he added. 
Khatami underlined the existing differences among world countries 
over the criteria and norms of human rights and Iran`s efforts to 
convince the international community about its own values with regard 
to the human rights issue. 
Ties between Iran and EU are `acceptable`, moving on a `logical 
track`, he said adding, "Iran as the most stable country of the region
and Europe with its historic record and possibilities can forge strong
cooperation." 
He thanked the European countries for extending sympathy and 
assistance to those affected in a deadly earthquake in the 
southeastern city of Bam. 
Khatami said, "The Islamic Republic, with the use of other 
countries` experiences and modern technology, has made a massive 
planning to reduce the harmful impacts of natural disasters, including
earthquakes, and continues to do so." 
The president outlined Tehran`s views with regard to the 
occupation of Iraq and its fallout, saying the Arab country`s problem 
would be resolved only under international efforts and the 
participation of the United Nations and regional countries. 
Khatami reiterated the need for concerted efforts of Iraq`s 
neighbors as well the EU and UN for a rapid establishment of a popular
government in that country. 
Solana, for his part, voiced his satisfaction over the world 
countries` assistance to the victims of `sad` earthquake in Bam. 
The EU foreign policy chief reiterated the bloc`s will for 
deepening relations with Tehran. Solana said the European Union sought
to forge ties according to mutual respect, even under a difficult 
situation, where the existence of differences are likely. 
He hoped that cooperation between Iran and EU would continue on 
a close, constructive and long-term platform. 
Solana arrived here for a two-day visit Sunday night and held 
meetings with Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi and Secretary of the 
Supreme National Security Council Hassan Rowhani. 
On Tuesday, he will visit Bam `to pay tribute to all those 
involved in the rescue operations, as well as to express the EU`s 
solidarity to the populations affected, alongside the commitment to 
providing assistance to the humanitarian and reconstruction efforts`. 
According to a statement issued by Solana`s office in Brussels 
Saturday, the visit takes place in the context of Europe`s mandate to 
`discuss the modalities of taking forward the EU`s dialogue with Iran 
in all areas`. 
On January 14, Solana will visit Kabul, where he will meet with 
President Hamid Karzai, Defense Minister Marshal Qasim Fahim as well 
as Foreign Minister Abdullah Abdullah and Commander of the 
International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan (ISAF), General
Goetz Gliemeroth. 
The trip will continue on January 15 in Tbilisi, Georgia where 
Solana will meet with acting president Nino Burjanadze and with 
president-elect Mikhail Saakashvili. 
BH/AH/210 
End 



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