Germany 'alarmed' at Iran nuclear drive, supports sanctions

9th November 2011, Comments 0 comments

Germany on Wednesday called a UN report on Iran's nuclear drive "alarming" and said it supported further sanctions to increase pressure on Tehran.

"The government is in favour of increasing the pressure now on Iran through further sanctions and is striving for corresponding steps," government spokesman Steffen Seibert told a regular news conference.

Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle earlier said that new sanctions would be inevitable if Iran refuses to engage in serious talks.

"The detailed signs concerning a possible military dimension of the Iranian nuclear programme are alarming," Westerwelle told reporters.

"If Iran continues to refuse to conduct serious negotiations on its nuclear programme, new, more severe sanctions would be inevitable," he said, adding that discussions with European partners and allies were underway.

But he said: "We rule out all discussion on a possible military option."

The International Atomic Energy Agency released Tuesday reams of what it called "credible" intelligence suggesting Tehran had worked on developing nuclear weapons.

But Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Wednesday that his country "will not budge an iota" from its nuclear path.

Germany is one of six world powers, together with Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States, in stalled negotiations with Iran aimed at convincing Tehran to freeze its uranium enrichment activities.

And it currently holds a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council.

© 2011 AFP

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