Peaceful nuclear technology for all if IAEA-compliant – Kuwait FM


Speaking at a joint press conference with French Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy, who was concluding a short visit to Kuwait, Sheikh Mohammad also Deputy Prime Minister, stressed the importance of "full compliance with international resolutions" with regard to nuclear activities.

On Iran, he said, "We see before us a country that now falls under chapter seven, and this is a cause for concern because Iran is defying international resolutions." He hoped Tehran would deal transparently with the IAEA so as to allow Secretary General Mohammad El-Baradei, "whom we (Kuwait) fully trust", to present a report that cited Iran’s cooperation.

Asked how the upcoming French presidential elections would affect Middle Eastern policies and relations with Kuwait, Sheikh Mohammad noted Kuwait’s cabinet had resigned but "Kuwait’s international policies and its commitment to international agreements will continue to be the course of action." He said talks with the French minister had touched on presidential elections and he was reassured French foreign policy was "very well rooted in French culture" and the European country was committed to regional peace.

Sheikh Mohammad pointed out that over the years, French presidents from both the right and left parties had supported Middle Eastern peace. "We (Kuwait) have no concern about France post-presidential elections." For his part, the French minister said his country played a balancing role in the Iranian nuclear file between the US on one side and China and Russia on the other.

Douste-Blazy said the passing of a new resolution on Iran would place the country before a choice of "isolation or suspending its uranium enrichment activities." On the Baghdad International Conference that took place today, the French Minister said his country had for a long time hoped such a conference would be held to "mobilize efforts to help Iraq", which was why France expressed its content with the Iraqi government’s initiative to hold the event with the participation of the UN Security Council’s permanent five and the EU.

He said such participation "sends a message of hope to Iraqis" who lived in daily turmoil and violence, hoping the meeting would consolidate trust of neighboring countries in Iraq and that measures were taken to boost Iraq’s security.

Douste-Blazy said Iraq "must not be turned into a place for settling conflicts" and the solution to the problem there was "political before anything else" and had to "come from the Iraqis themselves." This, he said, required a new beginning that brought together all Iraqi factions, and had to take place hand in hand with mobilization of international efforts toward Iraqi unity.

Asked about why the EU had announced it was ready to hold talks with Syria, the French minister said, "Our (France’s) stance has not changed at all." He said his country supported Lebanon’s sovereignty and hoped an international tribunal would be established to hold accountable all those responsible for the ex-Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri assassination and other political killings that had taken place in Lebanon over the past two years.

The EU, he said, represented by its envoy Javier Solana, sent a very "firm" message to Syria and had presented officials in Damascus with what he called a "political road map", noting that it was good that dialogue was taking place.

The two ministers also said they discussed cooperation in the fields of security and military affairs, as well as education, alongside economic cooperation.

The joint press conference came to conclude the French minister’s visit to Kuwait, which began this afternoon. Earlier, he was received by His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah and delivered a letter from President Jacques Chirac dealing with means to enhance the "distinguished relations" tying France and Kuwait.


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