Under pressure from the United States, the UN Security Council edged toward a Friday vote on a compromise draft resolution mandating sanctions against Iran over its refusal to halt sensitive nuclear fuel work. Britain’s UN envoy Emyr Jones Parry, seen here in July 2006, predicted that the 15-member council would vote Friday morning on the watered-down text.
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Thursday mocked the United States and its allies for trying to stop Iran’s nuclear program which he said had become a source of inspiration for other nations.
Britain’s U.N. Ambassador Emyr Jones Parry said on Wednesday he expected the
U.N. Security Council to vote this week on a resolution imposing sanctions on Iran for failing to heed calls it halt sensitive nuclear fuel production work.
Iran says its nuclear program will only be used for peaceful aims, such as electricity generation, and not to make bombs as United States and its European allies fear.
Ahmadinejad said Western efforts to deflect Iran from its goal were fruitless.
“America and some European countries know well that they are incapable of doing anything against the Iranian nation,” he told crowds during a speech in western Iran.
“They think the Iranian nation will wait for their permission to make progress but they should know that the Iranian nation has chosen the path of greatness of honor,” the official IRNA news agency reported.
But, the hard-line rhetoric of Ahmadinejad is not playing well in the United Nations Security Council or back at home in Iran.
The United States should push for an Iranian sanctions vote this week. The resolution will be “watered down” but will place some pressure on Ahmadinejad and the declining Iranian economy.
Iran, the world’s fourth largest oil producer, admitted Thursday its nuclear spat with the West is beginning to hurt investment in its oil industry, according to a newspaper report Thursday.
“Currently, overseas banks and financiers have decreased their co-operation,” Kazem Vaziri-Hamaneh, Iran’s oil minister, told the ministry’s news agency, according to the Financial Times.
Meanwhile, the Iranian people, including student protesters are NOT pleased with Ahmadinejad’s preoccupation with bashing the West while Iran’s economy falters with high unemployment.
Iranian former presidents Mohammad Khatami (L) and Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani casts his ballot at a polling station in Tehran on December 15.
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s opponents won local council elections in Iran, final results showed Thursday, in an embarrassing blow to the hard-line leader that could force him to change his staunch anti-Western stance and focus more on domestic issues.
Last week’s elections for local councils in towns and cities across Iran were widely seen as a referendum on Ahmadinejad’s 18 months in office.
Since taking power, Ahmadinejad has escalated Iran’s confrontation with the United States and the West, drawing the threat of U.N. sanctions for pushing ahead with uranium enrichment in Iran’s nuclear program. He has also provoked international outrage for his comments against Israel and casting doubt on the Nazi Holocaust.
His hard-line stances are believed to have divided the conservatives who voted him into power last year, with some feeling Ahmadinejad has spent too much time confronting the West and has failed to deal with Iran’s struggling economy.
Moderate conservatives opposed to Ahmadinejad won a majority of the seats in Friday’s elections followed by reformists who were suppressed by hard-liners in 2004, according to final results announced by the Interior Ministry.
And……..to increase the pressure
President Ahmadinejad BOASTS. But, the West is calling his BLUFF?
Stay tuned for action in the United Nations Security Council or NOT.
An Iranian student holds an anti-president placard, reading: â€œFascist President, Polytechnich is not your placeâ€, as President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, unseen, speaks at the Amir Kabir Technical University, in Tehran, Iran.
The Natanz uranium enrichment complex in Natanz is pictured in this January 2, 2006 satellite image.