President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad here Friday night remarked that Iran would expect the United Nations Security Council to defend its prestige as an international body.
President Ahmadinejad was heard making the remark at the end of a cabinet session in the northwestern province of Zanjan.
The president, accompanied by members of his cabinet, visited Zanjan province last Thursday and Friday and met in session before winding up their two-day visit to return to Tehran.
Pointing to the report submitted Friday by International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Mohamed ElBaradei on Iran's nuclear activities, he said "Iran considers this an opportunity to clarify the goals and missions of the Security Council." " The Security Council should act in accordance with international law, rules and regulations and commitments and prove whether it exists to defend the security of countries or has become as a tool in the hands of certain big powers." He, moreover, said that "states which produce and test atomic bombs cannot deprive Iran of its international legal right to engage in peaceful nuclear activities on the pretext that these are dubious." " They (states) can always find ways of removing ambiguities. The Islamic Republic of Iran, as a nuclear country, is ready to hold talks with all countries, including nuclear powers, and international circles to allay concerns of these states." Alluding to certain big powers, he said they should "respect the rights of the Iranian people and put Iran's nuclear case on its legal course by returning it to the IAEA." The president, who is also head of the Supreme National Security Council (SNSC), reiterated: "Iran will not negotiate with any country on its inalienable right to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes." " This is our red line. We will not withdraw an iota from it but are ready to hold talks and cooperate with countries that enjoy nuclear technology on strategies that will prevent all producers of nuclear fuel from making any diversion" in their activities," the president said.
Ahmadinejad pointed to Iran's broad cooperation and said it has cooperated with the IAEA even beyond its commitments.
"No country has had such a transparent cooperation with the agency yet. This shows that Iran has moved in a correct path and there ought to be no concerns.
"All countries have the right to access nuclear technology for peaceful purposes. No discrimination should can be allowed in this regard." He said "Iran's decision to access nuclear technology and produce nuclear fuel is legal, irreversible and in line with all international regulations." In his view, the IAEA was "losing its prestige among the Iranian nation day by day." Ahmadinejad and his cabinet returned to Tehran Friday evening.
His visit to Zanjan was his 12th to various provinces of the country since the start of his initiative of bringing the government closer to the people.