Germany and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council - the United States, France, Britain, Russia, and China - have agreed to make an offer to Iran to curb its nuclear program.
The offer includes incentives if Iran stops all uranium enrichment activity and penalties if it refuses to do so. Enriched uranium is used in the production of both electricity and nuclear weapons.
The United States has also announced that it will join in multilateral talks with Iran if it agrees to stop enriching and reprocessing uranium. U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said the Iranian clerical regime should consider the offer from Germany and the five permanent members of the U-N Security Council:
"We certainly hope that Iran will take a few days to think over a very serious proposal. It is a proposal, by the way, that is not just an American proposal. But a proposal that the international community is offering Iran as a way out of this impasse."
Ms. Rice says that "Iran now has two paths":
"One is a path that would give Iran considerable benefits, including civil nuclear power. The other though is a path that goes to the [United Nations] Security Council again, and can use then the full weight of the Security Council to isolate Iran."
President George W. Bush says that "the choice is up to the Iranians. . . .If they continue to say to the world, 'we really don't care what your opinion is,' then the world is going to act in concert. The next step of acting in concert," says Mr. Bush, "is going to the United Nations Security Council."
The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government.