President George W. Bush says that reports the Iranian government has doubled its capacity to enrich uranium mean that international efforts to stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons must also increase:
"We must double our effort to work with the international community to persuade the Iranians that there is only isolation from the world if they continue working forward on such a program . . .The idea of Iran having a nuclear weapon is unacceptable. It's unacceptable to the United States, and it's unacceptable to nations we're working with in the United Nations to send a common message."
The U.N. Security Council is considering a draft resolution that would impose economic sanctions on Iran for its refusal to stop all uranium enrichment and reprocessing activities. U.S. State Department spokesman Sean McCormack says that such a resolution would have a clear purpose:
"The practical effects, we would hope, would be to impose a set of international obligations through the passage of this resolution that would make it much more difficult for the Iranian government to further its nuclear weapons program. . .And states from around the globe would have certain obligations to prevent the flow of technology know-how, as well as other means, to develop this nuclear weapons program."
Such a resolution, says Mr. McCormack, would also show the Iranian government that there are costs to its behavior:
"Costs to their failure to heed the will of the international community as expressed in [U.N.] Security Council resolutions, as expressed in the I-A-E-A [International Atomic Energy Agency] Board of Governors statements. . . To try to get them to reassess their calculations that are going into whether or not they would engage in negotiations . . .on their program."
White House spokesman Tony Snow says Iran's suspending uranium enrichment-related and reprocessing activities is still an absolute condition for any negotiations.
The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government.