'Iran is biggest threat to nuclear pact's credibility'

April 22, 2013 22:32

GENEVA - Iran's nuclear program poses the greatest threat to the credibility of the global pact aimed at halting the spread of atomic weapons, a senior US arms control official said on Monday.

The Islamic Republic has a "long history" of deceiving the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and its nuclear enrichment program far exceeds that needed for civilian use, said Thomas Countryman, Assistant Secretary for International Security and Nonproliferation.

Two-week talks that opened in Geneva on Monday to review progress in implementing the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) were taking place in a difficult environment, he said.

"It is clear that if Iran succeeds in the project of constructing nuclear weapons, then it is not only the Helsinki meeting that becomes irrelevant, but it is in fact the entire credibility of this treaty," Countryman said.

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