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10 Sep, 2007 04:08

World still at odds over Iran's nuclear plans

The United Nations' nuclear watchdog, the IAEA, will once again try to tackle the issue of Iran's controversial nuclear programme at a meeting in Vienna.

A report published last month that says Iran is complying with IAEA guidelines will be discussed.

The U.S. and its Western allies, however, say that Iran's actions are insufficient and want to urge the agency to be harsher with Tehran. But this time, it seems a softer approach may be the road to take.

“A military solution will not resolve it, a military solution, in fact, might prompt Iran to, even if  they're not going to build a nuclear weapon, to accelerate the programme to go for a nuclear weapon,” pointed out Mohamed ElBaradei, IAEA Director-General, on August 22 in Vienna

The International Atomic Energy Agency has told Western powers to be patient with Iran.

Iran says that if the West gets harsher, it would jeopardize any progress that's been made during negotiations.

“Whenever Iran comes up with an initiative to resolve the nuclear standoff and to reach an agreement, it is accused of wasting time. What benefit does Iran gain from wasting time? We did not suspend our nuclear activities and even if two more UN resolutions are approved against it, it will not suspend it.  I am telling you, the suspension is impossible,” Ali Larijani, Iran's Top Nuclear Negotiator stated bluntly.

The United States had pressed for the UN Security Council to impose sanctions on Iran to halt any nuclear activity.

But Russia, backed by China, insists sanctions were not the way to go.

Instead, a resolution was passed in December of last year with the language much softer than originally proposed by the United States.

Iran's nuclear porogramme became an issue for the West when the country announced plans to enrich uranium.

The U.S. and other western countries suspect the process could be used for building atomic weapons.

But Iran has repeatedly denied these claims, and says their nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes only and they have no intention of giving it up.