Iran blasts Rice's speech

Iranian officials have criticised US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's speech, saying her comments were inaccurate.

    Rice said there was no plan for a US attack against Iran

    Speaking to Aljazeera from Tehran on Friday, adviser to the Iranian President Muhammad Shariati said Rice's comments were not warmly welcomed.

    "We reject the accusations Rice has directed at Iran, particularly those related to Iran's acts in 'destabilising the region'," he said.

    "All her accusations were inaccurate as Iran has neither dealt with the Taliban nor Saddam's regime, but their relations with past US administrations have been friendly."

    Rice had said that a pre-emptive strike against Iran is not on the agenda adding that Iran needs to live up to its obligations and agree to verification inspections.

    Iran says it has the right to have
    nuclear technology

    But Iran maintains that it has the international right to possess nuclear technology like any other nation.

    "How come a country that has approved a non-proliferation treaty on nuclear arms could not have the right to possess peaceful nuclear technology," Shariati said.

    In her speech, Rice said that attacking Iran was not a current option as diplomatic talks were ongoing: "The question is simply not on the agenda at this point; we have diplomatic means to do this," she said.

    Shariati also weighed in on Rice's comments pertaining to the Palestinian and Israeli conflict, saying that Palestinian resistance of Israeli occupation could not be classified as terrorism.

    Britain and its EU partners Germany and France have been pursuing diplomacy with Tehran, which has agreed to suspend some of its nuclear activities while talks are ongoing.

    SOURCE: Aljazeera


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