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Iran and US Disagree Over Nuclear Development


TV news report transcript

Iran's chief nuclear negotiator says Tehran has agreed only to a temporary freeze of some nuclear activities, and will never completely give up the right to produce nuclear fuel for peaceful purposes.

That comment came after the United Nation's nuclear watchdog agency approved a resolution Monday, authorizing its top official to monitor Iran's commitment to freeze its uranium enrichment activities.

The resolution by the International Atomic Energy Agency follows an agreement on suspension of enrichment activities, brokered with Iran by France, Germany, and Britain two weeks ago.

The United States suspects Iran has a secret program to produce nuclear weapons, and has urged the IAEA to bring the matter before the United Nations Security Council. But Iran insists its nuclear activities are strictly for generating electricity.

Iran's top nuclear official, Hassan Rawandi, dismisses the U.S. allegations. He told reporters Iran is only suspending its enrichment activities, while negotiating with Europe to acquire advanced nuclear technology.

HASSAN RAWANDI, IRANIAN NUCLEAR OFFICIAL (Farsi with English translation)

"Quite contrary to U.S. propaganda, the Islamic republic of Iran has neither abandoned the fuel cycle today nor will we do that at any other time. "

After Monday's resolution was approved, the head of the IAEA, Mohamed ElBaradei, said his agency would "vigorously" investigate Iran's nuclear program, but called on Tehran to cooperate fully.

MOHAMED ELBARADEI, INTERNATIONAL ATOMIC ENERGY AGENCY

"The more transparency demonstrated by Iran, the sooner we can provide the international community with the needed assurances that Iran's program is dedicated for peaceful purposes."

Meanwhile, a spokesman for the U.S. State Department said that the world must "remain vigilant" about Iran's nuclear activities. But Richard Boucher also said if Iran does not cooperate fully with the IAEA, the agency's board would have no choice but to bring the issue before the U.N. Security Council.

Iranian officials say the IAEA 's resolution is a great victory for Iran over the United States.

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