'IAEA report should change int'l approach to Iran'

Knesset FADC chairman Mofaz calls for intensified sanctions on Tehran to "paralyze economy," says free world must be proactive.

By JPOST.COM STAFF, REUTERS
November 9, 2011 08:46
2 minute read.
Kadima MK Shaul Mofaz

Shaul Mofaz 311 (R). (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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Tuesday's International Atomic Energy Agency report outlining Iran's attempts to develop a nuclear weapon should bring about a change in the international approach to dealing with the Iranian threat, Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee chairman Shaul Mofaz said on Wednesday morning.

The report "constitutes an opportunity for the free world to take action," he told Army Radio.  "I think the time has come to intensify sanctions to paralyze the Iranian economy."

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"We are approaching a reality of a balance of terror in the Middle East, and Iran's missile range covers most European capitals. Anyone who thinks he's immune [to the danger] is making a mistake," Mofaz said, explaining that this the moment of truth for the Western world's foreign policy.

Mofaz contended that the report's findings were not news to Israel "but exposed the true face of Iran and its intentions."

He stated that "military action of any kind, particularly from Israel, is the last and worst action at this time, but all options must be on the table and ready. We will not accept a nuclear Iran."

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The FADC chairman's comments came a day after the IAEA, completed a new report that said Iran has worked on developing an atomic bomb design and may still be conducting relevant research.

Citing "credible" information from member states and elsewhere, the agency listed a series of activities applicable to developing nuclear weapons, such as high explosives testing and development of an atomic bomb trigger.

Following the report's publication, US official said the United States may impose more sanctions on Iran, but is unlikely to go after its oil and gas sector or its central bank, and further UN sanctions against Tehran are unlikely.

"I think you will see bilateral sanctions increasing," the official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters.

However, because of Russian and Chinese opposition, chances for another UN Security Council resolution sanctioning Iran for its atomic program are slim, the official said.

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