Iran Nuclear NewsIranians dismiss new U.S. sanctions

Iranians dismiss new U.S. sanctions

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New York Times: Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator on Friday dismissed the sweeping new sanctions announced by the Bush administration against an elite unit of the Revolutionary Guard in Iran as insignificant and said they would have no effect on the country’s nuclear policies, the student news agency ISNA reported. The New York Times

By NAZILA FATHI
Published: October 27, 2007

TEHRAN, Oct. 26 — Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator on Friday dismissed the sweeping new sanctions announced by the Bush administration against an elite unit of the Revolutionary Guard in Iran as insignificant and said they would have no effect on the country’s nuclear policies, the student news agency ISNA reported.

The United States on Thursday designated the Quds force of the Revolutionary Guard and four state-owned Iranian banks as supporters of terrorism, and the Guard itself as an illegal exporter of ballistic missiles. The decision raised the temperature in America’s confrontation with Iran over terrorism and nuclear weapons.

“These sanctions are nothing new,” Saeed Jalili, who was appointed as Iran’s negotiator last week, said after returning to Tehran from Rome, ISNA reported. “Sanctions have been imposed on us for the past 28 years. The new sanctions, like those before, will have no effect on Iran’s policies.”

Also reacting to the announcement by the United States, the head of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari, warned that it was ready to defend the country if it came under attack.

“We will respond any attack fiercely,” ISNA quoted him as saying.

Iran’s prior nuclear negotiator, Ali Larijani, who accompanied Mr. Jalili to talks in Rome with the European Union about Iran’s nuclear activities, said the negotiations were favorable. While Iran’s relations with the United States remain troubled, he said, Iran intends to continue its cooperation with the United Nations nuclear agency.

“Our views have become closer since two years ago when we started the talks and we had very different views,” he told reporters, ISNA said. “I am not saying that we had agreements, but we can reach a final conclusion if the talks continue this way.”

Nazila Fathi reported from Tehran and Helene Cooper from Washington.

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