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article imageIran's FM talks nuclear program, Israel, and the Holocaust

By Layne Weiss     Sep 30, 2013 in World
New York - On Sunday, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said Israel had 200 nuclear weapons in its arsenal. He called it the "source of insecurity" in the Middle East.
"Israel has 200 nuclear warheads. Israel is the source of insecurity in our region. Israel is the source of aggression and violation of human rights of the Palestinian people. It should not have the audacity to continue to lie to the American people and to the world and mislead everybody," Zarif told George Stephanopoulos on ABC's "This Week." It was Zarif's first appearance on the ABC program on the show in 26 years.
The Iranian Foreign Minister also responded to reports that on Monday Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu would present intelligence to US President Barack Obama revealing that Iran has enough enriched uranium to produce nuclear weapons, JPost reports.
"Mr. Netanyahu and his colleagues have been saying since 1991 - and you can refer to your records - that Iran is six months away from a nuclear weapon. And we are how many years, 22 years after that and they are still saying we're six months away from nuclear weapons," he said.
Zarif said the country was not seeking nuclear weapons, Reuters reports.
He said Sunday,"Negotiations are on the table to discuss various aspects of Iran's enrichment program. Our right to enrich is non-negotiable."
Iran has vigorously defended its right for a nuclear enrichment program for civilian energy and medicine-related purposes. The US and its allies believe Iran has planned all along to use its nuclear program to build nuclear weapons."
We do not need military-grade uranium. That's a certainty and we will not move in that direction," Zarif said. "Having an Iran that does not have nuclear weapons, is not just your goal, it's first and foremost our goal.
Zarif was also asked about a passage on Iranian Supreme leader Ayatollah Khomeini's English website referring to the Holocaust as a "myth." Zarif said it was all a bad translation from Farsi, Jpost reports.
Zarif called the Holocaust a "heinous crime" and said it should "never be allowed to be repeated," Times of Israel reports.
He promised to speak to the people running the website about fixing the translation.
“This is the problem when you translate something from Persian to English,” he said.
Just last Tuesday, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called the Holocaust a "reprehensible" crime against the Jewish people.
More about Iranian foreign minister, iran nuclear program, Holocaust, Israeli nuclear program, Netanyahu
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