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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

People's Daily Online

Iran defense chief dismisses U.S. threat of military action

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 17:41, April 02, 2015

TEHRAN, April 2 -- Iran's Defense Minister Hossein Dehqan on Thursday shrugged off his U.S. counterpart's threat of military action against Tehran in case nuclear talks fail.

The threat to use military force against Iran, if Tehran does not accept a nuclear deal, is empty and insignificant, Dehqan was quoted as saying by official IRNA news agency on Thursday.

'Such empty words that are frequently repeated by U.S. officials are insignificant and an indication of passivity,' Dehqan said.

On Tuesday, U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said that if the current talks between Iran and the P5+1 group -- five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany -- cannot lead to a deal, then 'the military option certainly will remain on the table.'

'Iran is ready to respond to any aggression and threat,' Dehqan said, noting that the United States has been suffering from unsuccessful military actions in the region.

The minister said Carter's remarks are ill-timed and may affect the mood of ongoing nuclear talks in Lausanne, Switzerland.

They will have 'no impact on Iran's fair, reasonable and logical stance,' Dehqan said.

Negotiations between Iran and world's major powers over Tehran's controversial nuclear program entered the ninth day on Thursday after missing the Tuesday deadline for a general framework prior to a comprehensive deal by the end of June.

Western powers suspect that the country's nuclear activities might have a military dimension, while Iran insists on the peaceful nature of its nuclear program.

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