Teheran will remain steady in pursuing its disputed nuclear program, and hopes the UN Security Council won't sanction it for this, Iran's Foreign Ministry said Sunday. "The nuclear activities of Iran continue in a defined and clear framework," spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini said at his weekly news conference. He dismissed earlier reports that Iran had slowed down the pace of its uranium enrichment program.
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The Security Council has imposed two sets of sanctions on Iran since December over the Islamic republic's refusal to halt enrichment. A third resolution is being pushed by the United States and its allies at the Council, and Hosseini acknowledged Sunday that Iran was bracing for this.
"The third resolution would have its impact on Iran," the spokesman said.
Hosseini said Teheran would try to avoid the new sanctions by pursuing a policy that steers its nuclear program away from Security Council scrutiny.
This statement appeared to refer to an agreement reached last week between Iran and the UN's nuclear watchdog for a new negotiations framework.
The UN's International Atomic Energy Agency said on Friday that Teheran had agreed to answer questions on past nuclear experiments and would allow UN nuclear inspectors to visit facilities they had previously been barred from.
Meanwhile, the Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Watan reported that Iran claimed to possess enough missiles to strike 600 Israeli targets and that it wouldn't hesitate to use them in the wake of an attack by the United States or Israel.
The report followed two claims by the US army over the weekend implicating Iran in attacks against US forces in Iraq.
According to an announcement on Saturday night, US troops in Iraq uncovered a field containing 50 Iranian-made rocket launchers, all aimed at a US army base.
The discovery came after the US claimed that an explosively formed penetrator - a high-tech device that the US military believes is smuggled from Iran - was used against US forces in the Baghdad area earlier Saturday.
The penetrator was one of several bombs used in an attack that killed two American soldiers in the Iraqi capital.
The Iranians denied the charge.