Thu, Aug 03, 2006 - Page 1 News List

Ahmadinejad rejects UN Security Council deadline

AGENCIES , TEHRAN

Iran's hardline president on Tuesday rejected a UN Security Council deadline for it to suspend uranium enrichment, saying that Tehran would not be pressured into stopping its nuclear program.

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told a crowd in northeastern Iran that his country would not give in to the UN's threats.

"If some think they can still speak with threatening language to the Iranian nation, they must know that they are badly mistaken," he said in a speech broadcast live on state-run television.

"My words are the words of the Iranian nation. Throughout Iran, there is one slogan: `The Iranian nation considers the peaceful use of nuclear fuel production technology its right,'" Ahmadinejad said.

The Security Council passed a resolution on Monday calling for Iran to suspend uranium enrichment by Aug. 31 or face the threat of economic and diplomatic sanctions.

Iran's Foreign Ministry called the resolution "destructive" and "without legal foundation."

Meanwhile, Ahmadinejad also said that the US and Britain are responsible for Israel's killing of civilians in Lebanon and should not be trusted with seats on the Security Council.

Iran regularly blames Britain, as a creator of Israel, and the US, as the state that bankrolls and protects it, for deaths in conflicts in the Middle East.

"They are not competent to be members of the Security Council or to have the power of veto ... They are criminals and should be put on trial," Ahmadinejad said.

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