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Ahmadinejad: Iran Ready for Threat over Nuclear Program
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Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Thursday that his country was ready to face "anything" over the disputed nuclear program, showing his intransigence to the UN sanction resolution and rumors of possible US military strike.

During a visit to the Iran Cultural and Press Institute, Ahmadinejad said the Islamic Republic had gone through "formidable path" over the nuclear program and "Iran is ready for anything on this path".

"We are intending to fulfill the nuclear project with the least expense," he added.

The US military has just sent the second aircraft carrier to the gulf region, and some Western and Arabic media reports speculated that the US authorities had decided to launch attack against Iran from the sea before this April and would deploy PAC-3anti-aircraft missile systems in Arab countries.

Although White House has denied the rumors by saying that the US currently has no intention to attack Iran, the US Defense Secretary Robert Gates said that the increase of US forces was at least aimed at sending Iran a message not to misjudge the current situation in the Mideast.

Referring to the UN resolution 1737, Ahmadinejad said Tehran would not be stopped by sanctions and threat.

"They are trying to weaken Iranian nation's resistance, but they cannot succeed," he stressed.

The UN Security Council last month passed resolution 1737, deciding to impose sanctions on Iran's nuclear and missile program and called on the country to suspend the enrichment activities. However, Iran denied the request and vowed to install 3,000 centrifuges by March of 2007.

Ahmadinejad also rejected internal critics on his nuclear policy when he returned from his visit to the Latin America.

"Unfortunately, certain people at home are counterfeiting information in order to tarnish the great pride of the Iranian people," he was quoted as saying.

"They are just repeating the enemy's slogans to compromise, but this will be fruitless," the president added.

Some Iranian moderate conservatives and reformists have recently slashed at President Ahmadinejad's economic and foreign policies, accusing him of utilizing the people's support on nuclear issue to distract the public from his failure in internal affairs.

(Xinhua News Agency January 19, 2007)

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