Ukraine Snake Island Flag - Buy it Here!

Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iranian envoy to explain peaceful nuclear program to India

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

New Delhi, Aug 28, IRNA
India-Iran-Minister
Days before a UN deadline on Iran's nuclear program expires, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Asia-Pacific affairs Mehdi Safari will will visit New Delhi to explain the peaceful nature of the program, Tehran's response to the Western countries' package of incentives and their determination to continue nuclear development.

For its part, India will mouth the regular platitudes saved for the occasion not in favor of confrontation, rights and obligations of the Nuclear Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to be maintained, said a report published in a leading English daily The Times of India, here on Monday.

Indian officials are certain that there will be little that will prevent Iran from going the whole hog on the nuclear front. India has publicly stated that a nuclear-armed Iran would be unacceptable.

But as officials ruefully say, all the recent actions in Lebanon and Iraq as well as in the UN are designed to keep Iran on the nuclear track.

India is acutely aware that it has virtually no role to play in the global nuclear debate. Nor does it want to, in pursuance of its risk-free policies for the West Asia, despite it being an area where successive Indian leaders have said it has huge stakes.

In fact, unlike India's Teflon policies, even far-away Italy has demanded that it be made part of the Iranian nuclear talks, saying it has an interest because of its economic interests in the region.

India has strategic, economic, political and diaspora interests in the region but, given that Iran is now a bone of contention between the UPA government's allies and Congress, it's unlikely India will take any initiative.

The Iranian deputy foreign minister's visit comes at an interesting time. Only on Friday, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad inaugurated a heavy water plant, which is a further step in Iran's nuclear aspirations.

On Saturday, a senior Iranian legislator, Mohammed Reza Bahonar, for the first time referred to Iran's bomb ambitions, though over the weekend, the government has been careful to state that it was not a threat to 'the Zionist regime'.

These are comments intended to put a positive light on Iran's inevitable defiance of the UN, making it more difficult to cobble together any international coalition against Iran.

In fact, despite many analyses to the contrary, Iran actually faces the United Nations' deadline with a definite perception of strength.

Apart from the fact that China and Russia will not support sanctions against Iran, the price of oil automatically increases the costs of such sanctions. In the region, Iran is now increasingly looking like the one calling the shots.

2160/2322/1412



NEWSLETTER
Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list