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. Iran's Ahmadinejad asks world powers to be 'polite'
TEHRAN, Feb 5 (AFP) Feb 05, 2009
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad asked world powers on Thursday to be "polite" in dealing with Tehran, a day after diplomats from six countries met to discuss the nuclear standoff.

"Bullying powers should learn how to speak correctly and be polite so Iran's cultured and peace-loving people listen to them," Ahmadinejad said in the northeastern shrine city of Mashhad.

He did not single out any country but Iran has been at odds with the West over its nuclear programme which Washington and its allies suspect is cover for a weapons drive, something Tehran strongly denies.

"Iranians are logical people and if you have logical talk to offer, then provide it and say it. We listen to and welcome anyone who offers a solution to the problems of the world," the Fars news agency quoted Ahmadinejad as saying.

"The era of bullying is over," he said, adding it ended with Iran's Islamic revolution of 1979.

Iran set alarm bells ringing in the West on Monday with its launch of a domestically manufactured satellite. The West fears Tehran could use the same technology to carry nuclear warheads.

Tehran insists the satellite is for peaceful purposes only.

Ahmadinejad's remarks come a day after political directors from the UN Security Council's veto-wielding permanent members -- Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States -- plus Germany met in Wiesbaden to discuss Iran's nuclear programme.

The six powers, which were meeting for the first time since US President Barack Obama took office, expressed a shared commitment to a "diplomatic solution" to the standoff and urged Iran to cooperate fully with the International Atomic Energy Agency.

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