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UN chief calls for diplomatic solution to nuclear standoff with Iran


10:09, November 11, 2011

UNITED NATIONS, Nov. 10 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Ban Ki- moon on Thursday expressed deep concern over the possible military- dimensioned nuclear program in Iran, and called for a diplomatic solution, rather than the military one, to the nuclear standoff with Iran, a UN spokesman said here.

Martin Nesirky, the UN spokesman, said at a daily news briefing that after International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) released a report on Tuesday accusing Iran of conducting activities aimed at developing nuclear weapons, the secretary-general noted with serious concern that Iran might have carried out nuclear activities with military purposes,

"The secretary-general reiterates his belief that a negotiated rather than a military solution is the only way to resolve this issue," the spokesman said.

Ban emphasized again that "the onus is on Iran" to prove the peaceful nature of its nuclear program, and reiterated his call for Iran's compliance with all the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council and IAEA board of governors, Nesirky said.

IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano has circulated an updated report on Iran for consideration at the meeting of the IAEA board of governors, and copies of this report have also been submitted to the UN Security Council and secretary-general, Nesirky said.

The UN Security Council has imposed four rounds of international sanctions on Iran, despite Tehran's repeated insistence on the "peaceful" nature of its nuclear program.

Iranian Foreign Minister Ali-Akbar Salehi said on Saturday that the relevant IAEA documents are "unfounded and baseless."

On Wednesday, Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the latest IAEA report is a "politicized compilation f well-known facts."

"The authors (of the report) juggle the facts to create the impression that Iran's nuclear program has a military component," the statement said, adding that the approach can "hardly be called progressional and unbiased," and the report might lead to "a dangerous confrontation."

Tehran insists on the "peaceful" aspect of its nuclear program, but the United States and its Western allies worry that Iran would use the uranium enrichment to make nuclear weapons.

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