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Rice On Iran

Iran has resumed uranium enrichment in centrifuges despite the calls of the International Atomic Energy Agency, or I-A-E-A, and others to suspend such work. Many countries and organizations are uniting in their response to Iran’s actions, says U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice:

"The really remarkable thing over the past several months is that there is really now a tremendous coalition of countries that are saying exactly the same thing to Iran; a coalition of countries in the International Atomic Energy Agency's Board of Governors that has now reported the Iranian dossier to the U-N Security Council. All members of the permanent five – China, the United States, Russia, Great Britain and France – joined in that consensus. Countries like India are in that consensus."

The I-A-E-A Board’s decision to report Iran to the U.N. Security Council came after the Board found that Iran's twenty-year history of hiding its nuclear activities violated Iran’s international agreements, requiring a report to the Security Council. In addition, Iran broke an agreement with Britain, France, and Germany, and resumed uranium conversion activities in August 2005 and uranium enrichment-related operations in January 2006. Highly enriched uranium can be used to produce nuclear weapons.

Ms. Rice says that the U.S. "remains dedicated to a diplomatic approach":

"We believe that a diplomatic approach that is as robust as the one that we now anticipate with Russia and China and others united about this, will give us a way to resolve this problem. . . . Now that we are in the Security Council, there are many steps that the Security Council can take, authority that the Security Council has, to help enforce I-A-E-A requirements on Iran."

The Iranian government "can have a path to peaceful nuclear energy and they can be back in the community of responsible states," says Secretary of State Rice. "But they've taken a different path thus far. We now have to remain united," she says, "so that they [the Iranians] realize there isn't another path."

The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government.