Brazilian president defends Iran's right to nuclear program

09:55, April 23, 2010      

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Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on Thursday reaffirmed his personal and his administration's position on Iran's nuclear program.

He said the Islamic state has the right to develop its nuclear program so long as it is for peaceful purposes.

He believed the right of all countries to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes must be preserved.

He appealed for a negotiated solution to the Iranian nuclear issue, instead of the sanctions urged by the United States.

"The controversy is that Iran says they will not enrich uranium to make a nuclear bomb and some doubt that," the president said, stressing the need to find a common ground for the negotiation of the issue.

Lula also defended Brazil's right and authority to participate in the negotiations regarding the Iranian nuclear issue

"We have both the moral and political authority to discuss this subject with whoever is there. Peace is not a privilege of one country or another; it is for all countries that cordially practise peace," he added.

To help mediate a peaceful solution to the Iranian impasse, Lula sent his Foreign Minister Celso Amorim to Iran, Turkey and Russia.

The president himself is expected to visit Tehran in May.

"I am convinced that peace is within our reach," he said.



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