Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani has described uranium enrichment inside the Islamic Republic as the country’s “red line,” following nuclear negotiations between Tehran and six other countries.
“For us, red lines are not to be crossed. The rights of the Iranian nation and [our] national interests are our red lines; and those rights include nuclear rights within the framework of international law, as well as enrichment on Iranian soil,” President Rouhani said on Sunday in an address to Iranian lawmakers in Majlis.
Rouhani attended the Majlis session to defend the qualifications of his proposed candidate for the Ministry of Sports and Youth, Nasrollah Sajjadi.
The Iranian president said “sanctions, threats, contempt and discrimination” would not be effective in dealing with the Islamic Republic.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran has not bowed and will not bow to threats by any power,” Rouhani added.
Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council - Britain, France, China, Russia and the US - plus Germany wrapped up their three-day negotiations in the early hours of Sunday.
Rouhani dismissed the claims that the unilateral sanctions imposed against Iran, forced Tehran to attend the talks with the six major world powers.
Describing the sanctions as “illegal and inefficient,” Rouhani said, “We did not sit at the negotiating table because of sanctions.”
“If you recall, Iran sat at the negotiating table and persisted with its logical talks in 2001, 2002 and particularly 2003…, when there were no sanctions,” the Iranian president said.
“Even when the enemy wanted to begin [imposing] cruel sanctions, Iran did not end the negotiations and did not leave the negotiations after the sanctions [were imposed] either.”
“This means that Iran considers political approaches, negotiations and dialogue as the main solution to resolve international problems,” Rouhani noted.
The United States, Israel and some of their allies claim that Iran is pursuing non-civilian objectives in its nuclear energy program, with the US and the European Union having used the allegation as a pretext to impose sanctions on Iran.
Tehran strongly rejects the claim, maintaining that as a committed signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), it has the right to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.