Sunday, July 03, 2005

Iran Leader Says It Needs Strong Army

The Washington Times:
Iran's president-elect Mahmoud Ahmedinejad said Saturday his country needs a strong army to "form a great resource for the country and its people." The official Islamic Republic News Agency said Ahmedinejad, the Tehran conservative mayor who won an overwhelming victory in last month's presidential elections, made his comments to the leadership of the armed forces.

He said Iran was "pivotal in bringing security to the Islamic world," adding the country's policy was based on consolidating "peace, justice and openness to the world." READ MORE

The Bush administration and other Western governments have accused Iran of pursuing a nuclear weapons force.

Meanwhile, outgoing President Mohammad Khatami said his government's expertise will be at the disposal of the next government.

He urged the Iranians to support the next government elected by the people "because its success will be a success for the people."

IRNA quoted Khatami as saying he intended to pursue his energies on "dialogue among civilizations" when his term as president is effectively over.