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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

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Iranian President Names Cabinet Members

14 August 2005 -- New Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad named his government today with hard-liners in key ministries.

None of the 21 ministers in President Ahmadinejad's proposed cabinet are known to back democratic reforms. The proposed foreign minister is Manuchehr Mottaki, who has criticized Iran's nuclear negotiations with the Europeans,
saying the country should adopt a tougher position and make no concessions.

If the new cabinet is confirmed by parliament, it is expected to adopt more aggressive positions with the Europeans. Britain, France, and Germany have been trying to persuade Iran to abandon its uranium-enrichment program. Washington alleges that Iran has a secret plan to build nuclear bombs -- a charge Tehran denies.

Hundreds of Iranian students today staged a protest outside the British embassy in Tehran to protest European
demands that the country abandons its nuclear program. The students pelted the embassy with tomatoes, eggs, and stones.

(international agencies)

Copyright (c) 2005. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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