Iranian parliament speaker issues stern warning to the West

Iran's parliament speaker has threatened that the West may face "a done deal" if it provokes Iran, a stern hint that Teheran could build nuclear weapons if attacked. The speaker, Ali Larijani, who was once Iran's top nuclear negotiator, says the West should take seriously a recent warning by Mohamed ElBaradei, the UN nuclear watchdog chief. ElBaradei said in an interview last week that a military strike on Iran could turn the Mideast into a "ball of fire" and push Iran to develop a weapon. In an open session of parliament, Larijani warned the West on Wednesday not to provoke Iran "or you will face a done deal that will block the path of your return to a compromise with Iran." The phrase he used in Farsi, "kar-e anjam shodeh," means literally "an accomplished act" or "fait accompli." Larijani did not specifically say Iran might build a weapon if attacked, but his vague comment was the first hint at a threat it might do so. Iran has always denied wanting to build a weapons and says its nuclear program is intended only to generate electricty.