Britain warns world will not tolerate Iran’s military N-programme

December 4, 2010

Britain on Saturday reiterated its strong opposition to Iran’s alleged military nuclear programme.

“An Iranian nuclear weapons capability will not be tolerated by the international community,” British Defence Secretary Liam Fox said. “It could destroy hopes for peace in the Middle East, for international stability and could very well mean the end of Non-Proliferation Treaty as we know it,” he said at a panel discussion during the Manama Dialogue.

For the minister, a nuclear arms race in the region would diminish Iranian security, not protect it.

“We want a negotiated solution, not a military one, but Iran needs to work with us to achieve that outcome. We will not look away, or back down,” he said, two days before the start of talks in Geneva that will bring Iran together with the P5+1 grouping of UN Security Council permanent members Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States plus Germany.

According to Fox, the talks need to “make a serious start towards resolving the concerns of the international community about Iran’s nuclear programme.”

“These are set out clearly in the latest report of the International Atomic Energy Agency and in the Resolutions of the UN Security Council. Iran needs to engage seriously and constructively to address these concerns,” he said.

Britain will, in the meantime, “continue to talk, and keep up the peaceful pressure with targeted sanctions.”

The international community is serious about reaching an agreement that recognises Iran’s legitimate civil nuclear interests, but will not allow an Iranian nuclear weapons capability, he said.



About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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