President says Iran never planned to produce nuclear weapons

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Dr Hassan Rouhani. UN Photo: Loey Felipe

Sanctions against Iran were "unjust and illegal" as the country had never intended to produce nuclear weapons, the country's president told the UN General Assembly on Monday.

Iran had been subject to nearly a decade of travel bans and asset freezes aimed at ensuring the peaceful nature of its nuclear programme.

The measures are expected to be lifted following the signing of an agreement this year.

Dianne Penn reports.

Iran's President Dr Hassan Rouhani attributed the sanctions to, in his words, "misunderstandings and sometimes overt hostilities" by some countries.

Speaking through an interpreter, he said the UN Security Council resolution which provides the basis for removing the sanctions was "important," despite some shortcomings.

"We consider as unfair the conduct of the Security Council in the past and insist that Iran, due to the important fatwa of its leader and its defence doctrine, has never had the intention of producing a nuclear weapon and, therefore, sanctions resolutions against Iran were unjust and illegal."

In July, Iran and six world powers signed an agreement affirming that the country will not seek, develop or acquire nuclear weapons under any circumstances.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon had described the deal as "historic."

Dr Rouhani said the sanctions did not affect Iran's approach towards negotiations.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 1’06″

 

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