VIENNA — A resolution condemning Iran at the UN atomic agency on Friday will only strengthen the Islamic republic’s determination to press ahead with its “peaceful” nuclear programme, Tehran’s envoy said.
“We have had resolutions, we have got used to it. We have had even Security Council resolutions and sanctions,” Ali Soltanieh, Iranian ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), told reporters.
“And the only immediate effect is further strengthening the determination of the Iranian nation to continue its nuclear activities for peaceful purposes without any compromise.
“We will not suspend our enrichment activities even for a second. We are more determined than before after this resolution. This resolution will further strengthen the solidarity of the Iranian nation.”
Earlier Friday the IAEA board of governors passed a resolution of “deep and increasing concern” about Iran’s nuclear activities tabled by the five permanent members of the UN Security Council.
Last week, the IAEA came the closest yet to accusing Iran outright of seeking to develop nuclear weapons, in a report immediately rejected by the Islamic republic as “baseless.”
The US envoy to the IAEA, Glyn Davies, told the board on Friday that the “watershed report ... leaves little doubt that Iran, at the very least, wants to position itself for a nuclear weapons capacity.”
Soltanieh also said Iran would not attend an IAEA forum on Monday and Tuesday on creating a Middle East free of nuclear weapons because of the resolution and because of Israel’s alleged atomic arsenal.