Iran nuclear moves spark crisis: German officials

8th August 2005, Comments 0 comments

8 August 2005, BERLIN - Iran's determination to resume uranium conversion after rejecting European incentives to halt a nuclear fuel project risks sparking a major global crisis, German officials warned Monday.

8 August 2005

BERLIN - Iran's determination to resume uranium conversion after rejecting European incentives to halt a nuclear fuel project risks sparking a major global crisis, German officials warned Monday.

Gernot Erler, a foreign policy expert in Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's Social Democratic Party (SPD), said there was no longer any doubt that Iran was determined to produce nuclear weapons.

"We are now standing just one step away from a serious international crisis," said Erler in an ARD TV interview.

Germany, Britain and France - which are leading European Union (E.U.) efforts to defuse the standoff with Tehran - say they will recommend putting Iran in the dock at the United Nations Security Council if it restarts work at a uranium conversion plant in Isfahan.

Erler said this could result in U.N. sanctions aimed at Iran.

Karsten Voigt, who coordinates Schroeder's ties with the United States, expressed gloom over chances for a diplomatic deal to defuse the crisis.

Voigt said he doubted Iran would back down on the nuclear issue.

Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Charrasi said at the weekend that uranium conversion would resume Monday.

Iran says its nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes and denies it is seeking to build a bomb.

An emergency meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has been called for Tuesday by Berlin, Paris and London.

DPA

Subject: German news

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