Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said before he left for the UN General Assembly in New York that Iran does not need to have nuclear weapons and does not want to have war with the US, according to a CBS TV report.
Speaking to a CBS TV program before his departure, Ahmadinejad said, "You have to appreciate we don't need a nuclear bomb. We don't need that. What need do we have for a bomb?"
The Iranian leader also rejected reports that Iran and the US are heading toward conflict over Tehran's nuclear ambitions.
"It's wrong to think that Iran and the US are walking toward war. Who says so? Why should we go to war? There is no war in the offing," he said.
Ahmadinejad, who was due to arrive in New York on Sunday, reiterated that Iran's nuclear program is purely peaceful.
Noting Iran's nuclear program is "very transparent," he said, "In political relations right now, the nuclear bomb is of no use. If it was useful, it would have prevented the downfall of the Soviet Union. If it was useful, it would have resolved the problem the Americans have in Iraq."
On Iraq war, Ahmadinejad also dismissed US charges that Iran supports militants in Iraq, providing weapons and training. "We don't need to do that," he said.
"It's very clear the situation. The insecurity in Iraq is detrimental to our interests." he said.
The US has been in tense relations with Iran since the Islamic revolution broke out in 1979.
In 2002, Bush labeled Iran as part of an "axis of evil" that also included Iraq and North Korea, and has accused it of backing international terrorist groups, a charge denied by Iran.
(Xinhua News Agency September 24, 2007)