TEHRAN (Reuters) -President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Monday Iran would not retreat from its right to nuclear technology, state television reported.
“The Iranian nation will stand up for its legal right and will not retreat even one iota to preserve its nuclear right,” Ahmadinejad said in a televised speech to a rally in the central city of Shiraz.
“By misusing international organizations (U.N.)… you (the West) cannot pressure Iran to abandon its right.”
Iran said last week it had begun industrial enrichment of uranium, a process the West fears Iran will use for bomb-making. Tehran denies this, saying its aim is to produce electricity.
The announcement drew condemnation from the West. Russia, Iran’s closest big power ally, questioned if Tehran had achieved enrichment on such a scale.
The United States said on Tuesday that Iran’s latest statement on its nuclear program made it likely the United Nations Security Council would impose further penalties against Tehran.
But Ahmadinejad said Iran had no intention of yielding to international pressure.
“Abandon your oppressive behavior. Otherwise you (the West) and your nations will be harmed,” Ahmadinejad said, without elaborating.
The United Nations Security Council in March imposed new sanctions on Iran for defying to suspend its enrichment work, banning Tehran’s arms exports and putting financial bans on individuals and institutions. It was followed by a December 23 resolution.