Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan says hegemonic powers are using Tehran’s nuclear energy program as a pretext to force the Islamic Republic into yielding to their demands.
Dehqan said on Thursday that the sphere of Iran’s influence has spread far beyond the country’s borders and taken on “a decisive role on the international stage.”
“Today, the superpowers’ animosity towards Iran is due to the Islamic Republic of Iran’s power and might,” he said.
Dehqan said that hegemonic powers resort to different pretexts, including the country’s nuclear energy program, to pile up pressure on the Iranian nation.
“The enemy is seeking to compel our [Islamic] establishment to succumb to its demands and the accusation that Iran seeks nuclear weapons is in line with that very agenda,” he added.
The US, Israel, and some of their allies have repeatedly accused Iran of pursuing non-civilian objectives in its nuclear energy program. Iran categorically rejects the allegation.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has conducted numerous inspections of Iran’s nuclear facilities but has never found any evidence showing that Iran’s civilian nuclear program has been diverted to nuclear weapons production.
Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council – the United States, France, Britain, Russia and China – plus Germany are in talks to reach a final agreement aimed at resolving the standoff over Tehran’s civilian nuclear work.