News / Middle East

Iran Appeals for Understanding Ahead of New Talks

Al Pessin
Iran's Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif has issued an internet video asking viewers to understand Tehran's insistence on a right to enrich uranium, portraying the Islamic Republic as a champion of developing countries that want to stand up to world powers.
 
Called “Iran's Message: There is a Way Forward,” Zarif's YouTube video, which has been translated into several languages, was sent to the minister's 76,000 Twitter followers on Tuesday, one day before key talks on Iran's nuclear program resume in Geneva.

Story continues below video


Set by soothing music, the video opens with Zarif posing rhetorical questions.
 
“What is dignity? What is respect? Are they negotiable?" he asks. "Is there a price tag?”
 
Much of the five-minute video continues in that vein, with Zarif claiming insisting that Iranians consider uranium enrichment a right, and that Iran is asking only for the respect and dignity all other countries would expect.
 
Portraying Iran as a champion of the downtrodden, he says his country is standing up to “tyranny” and “demanding respect,” and that Iran is pursuing nuclear energy in order to determine its own destiny.
 
“There is a way forward, a constructive path toward determining our destiny, to advance, to make progress, to secure peace,” he says, reiterating his opinion that nuclear talks have not hit a “dead end.”
 
“My name is Javad Zarif, and this is Iran's message,” he says as the video concludes in a manner reminiscent of an American political advertisement.
 
Iran's demand for recognition of the right to enrich is one of the key issues being disputed as it resumes talks with the six-nation United Nations contact group. The United States, a key member of the group, says there is no such right for any country, but nations can have nuclear programs if they are verifiably not trying to build a nuclear bomb.
 
Zarif's video also contains a message apparently directed to hardliners in Iran, saying the choice their country faces is not “submission or confrontation,” and that the Iranian people had chosen a moderate path when they elected President Hassan Rouhani in June.
 
Rouhani's recent election, which led to the change in Iran's negotiating stance and made the talks possible, represents a rare window of opportunity that experts say must be used before hardliners in Iran or in the West reassert themselves.
 
Kelsey Davenport, a Nonproliferation Analyst at the Washington-based Arms Control Association, says while Iran and other countries believe a right to enrichment is enshrined in the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, it is difficult for Iran to claim such a right.
 
“We should not forget that Iran is actually in violation of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty currently," she said. "So it does need to sort of answer for those past noncompliance issues before we can talk about whether or not it is in good standing with the treaty moving forward.”
 
Iran has enriched uranium far beyond what is needed for nuclear power and research, to a level close to what is used in nuclear weapons.
 
The U.N. Security Council — represented here by the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany — wants that stopped and Iran's stockpile of highly enriched uranium reduced or eliminated. The group does not want Iran to finish building a reactor that could produce another nuclear weapon fuel: plutonium.
 
For its part, Iran wants relief from economic sanctions that have severely damaged its economy.
 
These talks are aimed at taking some first steps toward those goals, and setting a timetable for a broader agreement. But even this first step has been difficult and the remaining issues may not be settled this week, in the third round of talks with the new Iranian government.

You May Like

At Khmer Rouge Court, Long-Awaited Verdict Approaches

First phase of trial, which is coming to an end, has focused on forced exodus of Phnom Penh in 1975 - and now many are hopeful justice will be served More

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities More

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

Downing of Malaysian airliner, allegations of cross-border shelling move information war in war-torn country to a new level More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
November 20, 2013 11:28 PM
Iran should have enough oil to generate power needed for its people. Furthermore, nuclear power plants are no longer clean energy as Fukushima disaster had shown in Japan. How about developing solar energy plants in Iran where sunshine must be rich whole the year?


by: Godwin from: Nigeria
November 20, 2013 10:19 AM
Leaves us no other option to item 7. Let everyone go home and consult their home government. Iran cannot be trusted under any guise. Now is the time for the Saudis et al to start talking, consulting or taking action. The silence from the emirate is a bad suspense. Don't want Israel to go it alone, though it has been the only one openly threatened by Iran's nuclear weapon. But we know that after Israel, it will be Saudi Arabia (for sunni islam), then others of degenerate western countries. If Iran is this tough without nuclear backing, how hard and recalcitrant will it be when it achieves nuclear warhead? North Korea will be more civilized.


by: Sunny Enwerem from: Nigeria
November 19, 2013 4:58 PM
Am ok with any agreement with Iran as long as there is a military strike option in the deal aimed at regime change if Iran does against the agreement in any form.


by: Xiangxi from: China
November 19, 2013 3:40 PM
leave China out of this. we have much trouble with musliems already. we hope Saudis destroy Iran filth


by: Anonymous
November 19, 2013 3:36 PM
hey Kerry... and you want to trust this degenerate iranian liar...? even the chinless ugly there can not believe it... I read somewhere here that confrontation with Iran is inevitable - i agree.
frankly, I trust the israeli BB Yahoo far more than i trust the Kenyan Obama to protect US.


by: Salem m. Hafiz from: chicago il. 60640
November 19, 2013 3:27 PM

we all should stand for " Justic ".

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
July 31, 2014 8:13 PM
The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.
Video

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.
Video

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.

AppleAndroid