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UPDATED: 12:21, June 04, 2006
U.S. official wants to see success of diplomatic avenue to Iran nuclear issue
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A visiting U.S. official said Saturday in Kuwait City that Washington has no thirst for the military option but wants to see success of the diplomatic avenue to the Iran nuclear crisis.

U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs C. David Welch, who is currently on an official visit to Kuwait, made the remarks while talking with reporters at the U.S. embassy here.

Welch explained that the international concern over the Iran nuclear issue is not about its right to have civilian nuclear facilities, but the potential that it may develop nuclear weapons.

There would be no need for sanctions against Iran if there was "a sincere path to negotiations", stressed the U.S. official.

Meanwhile, Welch said the Iraqi people are facing severe security, economic and political challenges and there were people who were "determined" to disturb the country's security, adding that he was "confident that friends of Iraq will follow through with pledges of aid."

The new Iraqi government was "slowly taking the reigns of authority" and once it was ready, the presence of coalition forces would no longer be needed, he said.

On the Palestinian issue, Welch said even after the election of the Hamas-led Palestinian government, the United States continues to be the strongest donor to the Palestinian people and it is not true that Washington has cut off its assistance.

Source: Xinhua

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