Iran’s president has reiterated the country’s intention to pursue its nuclear activities, saying it has an “absolute right” to peaceful atomic technology. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was speaking after a report by the UN nuclear watchdog said Tehran had failed to comply with Security Council calls to suspend all nuclear fuel enrichment. Western diplomats at the United Nations in New York say they plan to introduce a resolution to the Security Council within a week giving legal force to its demands. But finding agreement poses a major challenge.
Amid fears Iran wants to make a nuclear bomb, the US, backed by Britain and France, favours limited sanctions. Russia and China, the other two veto-holding permanent Security Council members, have so far opposed such moves. Iran, which maintains it wants nuclear energy purely for civilian use, has repeated an offer to let international inspectors make unannounced checks – as long as the UN Security Council drops the case.