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Iran News: Another State Official Threatens with Nuclear Weapon Development

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Amidst severe economic and domestic crises, the Iranian regime has once again deployed an official to showcase its nuclear capabilities and intentions.

Speaking at a panel during an Al Jazeera seminar in Doha, Qatar, Abbas Araghchi, the regime’s former nuclear negotiator and Secretary of the Strategic Council on Foreign Relations, said, “Israel’s nuclear threat will alter the region’s security dynamics, forcing others to reconsider their stance on peaceful nuclear energy.”

Araghchi also reaffirmed Tehran’s opposition to normalizing relations between Middle Eastern nations. He labeled normalization as a betrayal of the Palestinian cause and dismissed the so-called “two-state solution” as doomed to fail.

In recent weeks, Iranian officials have repeatedly hinted at their nuclear ambitions. On May 10, Ahmad Bakhshayeshi Ardestani told Ruydad 24, “I believe we have acquired nuclear weapons but are not disclosing it. Our policy is to possess nuclear bombs while officially adhering to the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action). To confront major powers like the United States and Israel, Iran must be on equal footing, which means having nuclear weapons.”

Despite appeals from the European Union, the United States, and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for Iran to renounce any intentions of developing nuclear weapons, Tehran continues its nuclear brinkmanship, underscoring the ineffectiveness of Western diplomatic efforts.

Kamal Kharazi, head of the Strategic Council on Foreign Relations and advisor to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, emphasized in an interview with Al Jazeera Mubasher, “We have no decision to produce nuclear bombs, but if Iran’s existence is threatened, we will be forced to change our nuclear doctrine.” He reiterated this position shortly thereafter.

In April, Mahmoudreza Aghamiri, a nuclear energy expert, told state television, “According to the Supreme Leader’s fatwa, building a nuclear bomb is religiously forbidden, but if his opinion changes, we have the capability to build one.”

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Since 2002, following the international response to revelations by the Iranian Resistance about Iran’s secret nuclear weapons program, Tehran has persistently employed threats and negotiations to leverage its nuclear potential. This strategy seeks to secure its security, political, and strategic goals amidst internal and external pressures.

Despite official denials, Tehran’s tactic of sending various officials to hint at nuclear weapon development aims to pressure the West for concessions, while facing the reality of its status as a major state sponsor of global terrorism.