Tuesday, May 23, 2006

German Foreign Minister Steinmeier on the Iran negotiations

"God may smile on us, but I don't think so." - anonymous Pentagon adviser quoted by Seymour Hersh April 2006 on Bush administration plans to pressure Iran militarily

Der Spiegel reports on German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier's (SPD) diplomatic efforts to achieve an agreement with Iran over its nuclear program: Golfstaaten wollen im Atomstreit vermitteln 21.05.06.  And it also reports that Iran is threatening the EU with unspecified economic retaliation over its peaceful nuclear program.

Steinmeier describes the situation as the "most serious crisis" of his political life.  He seemed to dodge a question about what his position meant for German support of Israel's right to exist, saying it was a matter for "serious concern".

That was kind of an odd question, since Israel's right and ability to exist are no in question in the situation.

But Steinmeier on a visit to Kuwait clearly criticized Iran for concealing its nuclear program for 18 years and demanded that Iran adopt a position of transparency and thorough explanation of its program.

The article also reports that he announced that the Gulf States were sending a new delegation to Teheran to mediate in the dispute over the nuclear program.

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