Iran dismisses US call for strong UN action
TEHRAN, Apr 14 (Reuters) The Iranian president today dismissed remarks by US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who said the United Nations must consider strong action to force Iran to comply with demands over its nuclear plans.
''What she said is not important. She is free to speak out,'' Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on the sidelines of a conference in Tehran, the official IRNA news agency reported.
Ahmadinejad drew condemnation from the United States and other world powers by announcing on Tuesday that Iran had enriched uranium to a level used in power stations, defying U.N.
demands for Iran to halt enrichment.
The United States and other Western nations accuse Iran of seeking to master enrichment technology to build atomic weapons, a charge Iran denies.
Rice said yesterday that the UN Security Council should look at Chapter 7 of the UN Charter to force Iran to comply with international obligations over its nuclear plans.
''I am certain we will look at measures that can be taken to ensure that Iran knows that they really have no choice but to comply,'' Rice told reporters.
Chapter 7 makes a resolution mandatory under international law for all UN members. It can lead to sanctions and eventually the use of force if it specifically calls for them or threatens ''all necessary measures''.
A Chapter 7 resolution passed against Iraq has been seen as giving the United States a legal argument for the bombing and then invasion of that country.
The Security Council is divided over how hard to push Iran.
Russia, one of the five veto-wielding council members, fears that the United States might interpret a Chapter 7 resolution on Iran in the same way it interpreted it over Iraq.
REUTERS CH HS2246