Sunday Feb 05, 201211:23 AM GMT
Iran preparing for worst scenario: Salehi
Iran's Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi
Sun Feb 5, 2012 11:22AM
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Iran's Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi says Tehran is preparing itself to counter all Western plans aimed at mounting pressure on the Islamic Republic.


“Tehran is examining even the worst-case scenarios and preparing itself to counteract them,” said Salehi in a Saturday interview.

The Iranian foreign minister made the remarks in reference to the fresh round of western-imposed sanctions against Iran over its peaceful nuclear program.

The West has tightened the noose of sanctions around Iran as the US and Israel have intensified their war rhetoric against the country.

During the weekend, US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta reportedly said there is a strong possibility that Israel will launch an attack on Iran in April, May, or June 2012.

Meanwhile, European Union (EU) diplomats announced on Friday that the bloc's 27 member states have agreed on the major mechanisms of an agreement to impose sanctions against Iran's telecommunications sector.

The new EU agenda comes in the wake of the bloc's latest agreement on January 23 to ban oil imports from Tehran, freeze the assets of the Central Bank of Iran across the EU, and ban sales of grains, diamonds, gold, and other precious metals to the country.

Earlier on Thursday, the US Senate Banking Committee also passed a new round of stringent sanctions that target Iran's telecommunications and energy sectors.

Senate's bipartisan package comes on top of Washington's sanction law, approved on December 31, 2011, which seeks to penalize countries importing Iran's oil or conducting transactions with the country’s Central Bank.

The US, Israel, and their Western allies accuse Iran of pursuing a military nuclear program and have used this allegation as a pretext to convince the United Nations Security Council to impose four rounds of sanctions on Iran.

ASH/MYA/MA
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