Iran: We will also take 'illegal actions' if UN imposes sanctions

Thursday, March 22, 2007

File:Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei,.jpg
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

Iran has stated today that if the United Nations proceeds with imposing sanctions on the country or force them to halt their uranium enrichment, they will proceed with "illegal actions," but it was not clear if those actions meant moving towards a nuclear bomb or not.

"Until today, what we have done has been in accordance with international regulation. But if they take illegal actions, we too can take illegal actions and will do so," said Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the top leader of Iran during an address to his nation.

Khamenei also said that he will attack their "enemies" who attack Iran.

"If they want to treat us with threats and enforcement of coercion and violence, undoubtedly they must know that the Iranian nation and authorities will use all their capacities to strike enemies that attack," added Khamenei.

Despite the warning, the United States has said that the path to resolving their issues with Iran's nuclear enrichment is with "diplomacy."

"Iran is a country very much on the defensive right now. The United States is committed to pursuing a diplomatic solution to the challenges posed by Iran. This will require patience and persistence," said U.S. Department of State undersecretary for political affairs, Nicholas Burns.

Khamenei also stated that "nuclear energy is a must" and "a necessity in the long term. One day oil will dry up. ... The Iranian nation needs nuclear energy for life, not weapons."

France says that they are hopeful that by the end of this week, sanctions will be drawn up and imposed on Iran.

Russia says that they "will not support excessive sanctions" on the Iranian nation and that "this is how they [the U.S.] acted in past times, during the Cold War, when they scared everyone with the Soviet threat and persuaded everybody to group together in a disciplined block," said Russian Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov.

A meeting that took place on Wednesday between all 15 member nations of the U.N. Security Council was unsuccessful as no conclusion about Iran's nuclear program could be reached.