We don't want to attack Iran says Bush
THE United States does not intend to attack Iran to crush its suspected nuclear weapons project, according to President George W Bush.
But he added that "you never want a president to say never".
Bush expressed hopes that a European diplomatic initiative would persuade Tehran to abandon any such program.
"I hear all these rumours about military attacks, and it’s just not the truth," said Bush, who is due to leaves tomorrow for a five-day trip to Europe to mend fences with allies. "We want diplomacy to work."
Bush said he supports European nations’ efforts to persuade Iran to scrap its uranium enrichment program in exchange for technological, financial and political support. But he did not address US reservations about Europe’s approach. The US has refused to get involved in the bargaining with Tehran or to make commitments, insisting that Iran abandon its program.
Bush also said Iran should stop supporting Hezbollah guerrillas in southern Lebanon because this could threaten the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.
Iran is on record as being firmly opposed to any peace process that might legitimatise Israel’s presence as a Jewish state in the Middle East.
Asked if he trusted Iran, Bush said: "Well, it’s hard to trust a regime that doesn’t trust their own people."
Bush flies to Brussels tomorrow for a three-night stay during which he will dine with French President Jacques Chirac. He meets with 25 EU leaders at a summit on Tuesday. Following his visit to Germany on Wednesday, he is scheduled to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin in Slovakia.
Bush said he doesn’t believe the West is split between an "idealistic United States and a cynical Europe".
"America and Europe are the pillars of the free world," he added.
"Leaders on both sides of the Atlantic understand that the hopes for peace in the world depend on the continued unity of free nations. We do not accept a false caricature that divides the Western world between an idealistic United States and a cynical Europe."
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Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 6 C to 17 C
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