Iranian FM: Possessing Nuclear Weapons Would Only Harm Our Nation’s Security

Ali Akbar Salehi speaks to reporters in New York, calls his country ‘the anchor of security, stability, and peace’ in the region.

Iran's Minister of Foreign Affairs, MIT-educated Ali Akbar Salehi, once again tried to make the case his country is not bent on developing nuclear weapons – claiming that possessing such weapons would only endanger Iranian security.

Speaking on Monday at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, Dr. Salehi said that Iran has "never launched a war but zealously have defended our country, and will do so by all means."

Salehi stated that achieving a nuclear weapon is not in Iran’s interests as it would “attract more threat from the other side,” as “one or two rudimentary bombs” that the Islamic Republic could assemble would not be a match for the United States.

Salehi spoke about Israel as well, using its proper name in a rare occurrence, as opposed to using the term “Zionist entity,” or “uncivilized Zionists,” the latter most recently used by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad during his speech at the United Nations General Assembly last week.

"Some argue that the phrase ‘attacking Iran’ is a response to an identity and security crisis of Israel and absolutely for domestic political consumption," he said.

"Some others do believe such pronouncements are nothing but intervention in the American politics and the election favoring one candidate over the other. Another explanation has been offered; in other words, to engage the U.S. in another war in order to marginalize the most important issue in the Middle East, the plight of Palestinians and the occupation of Palestine," continued Salehi.

Salehi argued that his country is "the anchor of security, stability and peace" in the region, and it plays "positive regional and international responsible role, regardless of American and Israeli desires."

 The Iranian official also claimed the Islamic Republic supports Hamas because members of Hamas is are "justice seekers and freedom seekers," and the organizations also contributes to the stability in the region, because the core problem is the occupation of the Palestinians.

He also praised his American education and said Iran "opposes any phobia, including Americaphobia."