Joint Press Conference on Iran with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei (Excerpts)

February 23, 2007

Weapon Program: 

  • Nuclear

Related Country: 

  • Iran

. . .

MOHAMED ELBARADEI, DIRECTOR GENERAL, IAEA: . . . We also discussed Iran and we both share the concern of the international community that Iran has not responded positively to the demands of the Security Council. We believe still that the door is still open; there is a window of opportunity for both Iran and the international community to go back to the negotiating table. I believe this is the way for a long-term solution and we would obviously continue to work to see that that will happen sooner than later.

. . .

BAN KI-MOON, SECRETARY-GENERAL, UN: . . . In terms of the Iranian nuclear issue, I am very much concerned, again, that the Iranian authorities have not been able to meet and comply fully with the Security Council resolution. I sincerely hope that the Iranian authorities will continue their dialogue with the international community. This is the best way to resolve all the issues. Now that the IAEA Director General's report is received by the Security Council, I understand that the Security Council members will again discuss this matter. Even under this situation, I hope dialogue will continue, for mutually satisfactory resolution. At the same time I urge again Iranian authorities to fully comply, not only with the Security Council resolution, but respond positively to the wishes of the international community, who really would like to see peaceful resolution of this issue. Thank you.

Q: Good afternoon, Dr. ElBaradei, Secretary-General. Do you think that the report which has documented Iran's defiance of requests that were made for a long time about ... , can avoid in the short term some sort of confrontation or escalation of the situation?

ELBARADEI: Well, I still very much hope so. Again the reaction that you saw from the international community, in particular the Six Parties that are engaged in the dialogue with Iran, they made it very clear that they would like to see eventual resolution of the Iranian issue through the negotiation. You remember, Michael, I had this idea of a simultaneous time-out, I mean that idea is still on the table; it has not been to my knowledge rejected by any party, I think every, all the parties think it's a - it could be a good beginning but it needs to be translated into details and I hope, you know, in the next few weeks, while the international community, as the Secretary-General said, will probably also be working through the Security Council, that we would like to see a dialogue between the concerned parties, to see how we can create the conditions to go back to negotiations and ensure a long-term solution to the problem.

BAN: If I may add just one thing, it's that I hope sincerely that the Iranian authorities should learn from the case of the North Korean nuclear issue. They should think about a better future for their country and their people, through dialogue.

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