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Sun Sep 9, 2012 5:26AM
Iran's Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast

Iran's Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast

Iran's Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast has dismissed the “irresponsible” remarks recently made by the British foreign secretary about the 'necessity to intensify sanctions against Tehran' over its nuclear energy program. Speaking before a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Cyprus on Friday, British Foreign Secretary William Hague called on the 27-nation bloc to tighten the sanctions against Iran over its nuclear energy program, saying, "It is necessary to increase pressure on Iran, to intensify sanctions, to add further to EU sanctions that are already enforced." Mehmanparast on Monday reiterated the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear energy program, and pointed to the final statement of the 16th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), agreed on by the 120 NAM member countries, in support of Iran's nuclear energy activities and in condemnation of unilateral sanctions against any NAM member state. The remarks by the British foreign secretary were a serious violation of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) regulations with the purpose of undermining the success of the NAM summit in Tehran, he said. He emphasized that Iran is carrying out all its nuclear energy activities under the IAEA surveillance. The Iranian spokesperson added that the simultaneous approach of pressure and talks is futile and urged Western countries to stop employing the obsolete method. The 16th NAM Summit wrapped up in the Iranian capital on August 31, with the member states passing a final resolution, which included over 700 paragraphs. The final communiqué expressed support for Iran’s nuclear energy program, rejected the United States’ unilateral sanctions against the Islamic Republic.’ At the beginning of 2012, the US and the EU approved new sanctions against Iran's oil and financial sectors. The embargoes aim to prevent other countries from purchasing the Iranian oil or transacting with the Central Bank of Iran. Washington and the EU have declared that the bans are meant to force Iran to abandon its nuclear energy program, which they claim includes a military component. Iran has vehemently refuted the allegation, arguing that as a committed signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and a member of the IAEA, it is entitled to use the nuclear technology for peaceful objectives. SF/HJL/MA
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