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White House: Iran Deepens International Isolation With Threats Against US

The White House says Iran has deepened its international isolation by threatening to bring "harm and pain" to the United States, in the continuing dispute about Tehran's nuclear program.

White House spokesman Scott McClellan was responding to the threat issued by Iran in Vienna earlier Wednesday at an International Atomic Energy Agency meeting.

The IAEA decided today to refer a widely anticipated report about Iran's nuclear program to the Security Council. The U.S. ambassador to the IAEA Gregory Schulte said the report makes clear Iran has failed to meet demands to stop all uranium enrichment work.

U.S. Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns said the Security Council will start debating Iran's nuclear program early next week.

Speaking before a U.S. congressional committee, Burns also said there is universal agreement Iran is trying to seek nuclear weapons.

The United States wants the Security Council to impose sanctions on Tehran for allegedly violating the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei said a political solution to the standoff is still possible. He said resolving the stalemate will take time, and he called for people on both sides of the issue to lower the rhetoric.

Iran says its nuclear program is aimed at developing electricity.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.