Ahmadinejad: US plotting to stop Iran's progress

"Enemy's moves focused on preventing Iran's development," leader says as pressure mounts over nuclear program.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
December 21, 2011 22:43
2 minute read.
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

Ahmadinejad 311. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Wednesday that the US was plotting against Iran in order to keep the Islamic Republic from reaching its potential.

"All the enemy's moves are focused on preventing Iran's development and progress," Ahmadinejad was quoted as saying by the FARS news agency. The Iranian president was giving an address to a large crowd assembled in the city of Varamin, according to the report.

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"They do not want to let Iran blossom and use all its possibilities," Ahmadinejad said of the US which, along with the European Union and other allies, agreed on Tuesday to step up pressure on Iran to force it to resume talks over its nuclear program.

The diplomats from the so-called "group of like-minded nations" met in Rome to discuss further sanctions against Iran, which could include a possible EU oil embargo.

Earlier on Wednesday, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey expressed concern that the US will get drawn into conflict with Iran, and said the United States is collaborating with Israel on the Iran issue during an interview with CNN.

"My biggest worry is they will miscalculate our resolve," Dempsey said, referring to Iran. "Any miscalculation could mean that we are drawn into conflict, and that would be a tragedy for the region and the world."

Dempsey's comments came after US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said Monday that Iran would be able to assemble a nuclear bomb within a year, if not sooner.

Speaking during an interview with CBS News, Panetta stated that if intelligence was received that Iran was proceeding with developing a nuclear weapon then “we will take whatever steps necessary to stop it...There are no options off the table.”

Panetta said that while Iran needed a year or less to assemble a weapon, he had no indication the Iranians have made the decision to do so.

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