UNITED NATIONS (May 3) — U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton this afternoon countered Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s earlier roundhouse onslaught against the United States, Israel and the International Atomic Energy Agency with a cool statement of fact and a bow to international concerns about an arms race in the Middle East.
“This morning Iran’s president offered the same tired, false and sometimes wild accusations against the United States and other parties at this conference,” she said on the opening day of the review conference on the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. “Iran is the only country represented in this hall that has been found by the IAEA Board of Governors to be currently in noncompliance with its nuclear safeguard obligations.” Ahmadinejad had earlier called for suspension of all nuclear power states from the Board of Governors.
But Clinton also acknowledged broad concerns in the developing world by calling the Middle East “the greatest threat to nuclear proliferation” and promising to back “practical measures” to create a WMD-free zone in the Middle East.
“We want to reaffirm our commitment to the objective of a Middle East free of these weapons of mass destruction and we are prepared to support practical measures that will move us towards achieving those objectives,” she said. The initiative, backed by Russia as well and already bruited among other permanent members of the Security Council, revives an old projec… >>>