Saturday, April 16, 2005

Cheney Says U.S. Supports the European-led Negotiations

Julie Hirschfeld Davis, The Baltimore Sun:
On Iran, Cheney reaffirmed the administration's support for diplomatic efforts by Germany, France and Britain to rein in Tehran's efforts to develop nuclear weapons. But he suggested that there is a limit to how long the United States will wait for those negotiations to bear fruit.

"We share the view that a great many governments do, that the Iranians should not have nuclear weapons," Cheney said, adding that U.S. officials have "made it clear we support" the European-led negotiations.

"I wouldn't specify, at this point, a timetable," Cheney said. "There will be a point at which either they'll close the deal or, if they're not successful, if the Iranians were to begin operating again, obviously we'd have to consider next steps and do that in conjunction with our allies."

Cheney declined to speculate on whether Iran is working toward developing a nuclear arsenal. He said it is too soon to tell whether the Europeans are doing enough to halt such steps. "We won't know until the negotiations are over," Cheney said.