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. Bush raps Iranian president on nuclear program
WASHINGTON (AFP) Dec 19, 2005
President George W. Bush on Monday said incendiary statements on Israel by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad showed why it was "universally" accepted that Tehran should not have nuclear weapons.

Bush, in an end-of-year news conference at the White House, threatened Iran with United Nations Security Council action, should the government refuse to bow to diplomatic pressure to get off the nuclear track.

"People know that an Iran with the capacity to manufacture a nuclear weapon is not in the world's interest. That's universally accepted.

"And that should be accepted universally, particularly after what the president recently said about the desire to annihilate, for example, an ally of the United States."

Officials in Tehran said earlier Monday that they would make new proposals during talks with Britain, France and Germany this week but would not compromise on a demand to conduct sensitive fuel work.

The first formal talks between the sides in months will examine the possibility of resuming long-term negotiations aimed at winning guarantees that Iran will not acquire the bomb.

But Bush said Monday should that not work, there would be a role for the UN.

"If they don't (continue) along the diplomatic path, there's always the United Nations Security Council."

"The next step is to make sure that the world understands that the capacity to enrich uranium for a civilian program would lead to a weapons program.

"We cannot allow the Iranians to have the capacity to enrich."

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